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Barrick eyes Peru growth amid global asset expansion

Barrick Gold’s (TSX: ABX)(NYSE:GOLD) ongoing push to expand its global portfolio has prompted the company to revisit its presence in the Latin American market.

The world’s second largest gold miner has in the past year been particularly interested in Peru, where it was the second top gold producer until 2018. According to local newspaper Gestión, Barrick recently submitted a request to obtain a mining concession for 400 hectares in the southern Puno district.

The application is the first step in the process of securing exploration and exploitation permits in the requested area, where Barrick’s carried out exploration two years ago.

“Discovery and development are the true drivers of value, and our strong focus on exploration is evident in our widespread hunt for new discoveries with Tier One potential as well as reserve replenishment opportunities,” president and CEO Mark Bristow said in a statement.

The gold giant has also been active in three additional exploration prospects, including the Pataqueña vein (in Puno) and the Libélula (Áncash) project .

Late last year, Barrick inked an option agreement with fellow Canadian company Xali Gold (TSX-V: XGC) for the Tres Marias gold-silver property in the Puno District of southern Peru. 

The deal granted Barrick the right to buy 1% of the royalty, for a single one-time payment of $750,000, which, in turn, will reduce Xali’s royalty from 1.5% to 0.5%.

Barrick aims to earn a 100% stake in Peru’s Tres Marias project, pictured here. (Image courtesy of Xali Gold.)

The Toronto-based miner has been successfully replacing depleted reserves. In 2023, it increased its gold reserves to 77 million ounces and replaced 112% of its annual gold equivalent production. 

Since 2019, it has organically added 29 million ounces of attributable reserves, which, on a 100% basis, represents 44 million ounces of reserve addition across all Barrick-managed mines.

The company is also focusing this year on its assets in Nevada, United States, where it already has three of its Tier One gold mines. The company has had to contend with an 18-month delay to permits at the Goldrush project, part of its Nevada Gold Mines partnership with Newmont (NYSE: NEM; TSX: NGT),

The gold giant has also faced a slow start to commissioning at the Pueblo Viejo mine expansion in the Dominican Republic.

Chief executive Mark Bristow noted in a recent interview he is also looking forward to Barrick being promoted into the “premier league” of copper producers. He anticipates this will happen when its Super Pit expansion project at Lumwana, in Zambia, and the Reko Diq project, in Pakistan, come on line.

Source: MINING.COM – Read More