Barrick Gold is looking to acquire assets in Peru as its push for global expansion continues. According to local newspaper Gestión, a subsidiary of the Canadian mining company, Barrick Peru, submitted a request to obtain a mining concession for 400 hectares of land in the Puno region in the south-east of Peru.

Submission of the request marks a step towards further exploration and extraction of mineral resources in the area, where Barrick first carried out exploration two years ago.

In a statement referring to the company’s financial results, president and chief executive Mark Bristow said: “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.”

Barrick has also been exploring three additional gold exploration projects including the Pataqueña vein (in Puno) and the Libélula (Áncash) project.

In November last year, Barrick signed an agreement with fellow Canadian miner Xali Gold for the Tres Marias gold-silver property in southern Peru. Under the agreement, Xali will retain a 1.5% net smelter return royalty. Barrick will hold a right to buy 1% of the royalty, for a single one-time payment of $750,000 (C$1.01m), which, in turn, will reduce Xali’s royalty from 1.5% to 0.5%.

In 2023, Barrick increased its gold reserves to 77 million ounces and replaced 112% of its annual gold equivalent production, successfully managing to replace depleted reserves.

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The expansion comes at a time of gold price hikes. Earlier this week, prices reached a new record, rising above the $2,300 level, driven by expectation that the Federal Reserve will start cutting interest rates soon. Speaking on Wednesday, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said the bank is likely to begin lowering rates “at some point this year”.

As conflicts in the Middle East and Ukraine continue to present heightened geopolitical risks, investors are also looking to gold as a safe investment.