16 April

Barrick Gold has purchased 800,000 antibody test kits for screening its workers as well as the communities surrounding its mines for Covid-19, the Financial Times reported. Chief executive Mark Bristow said in an interview that the company has made major investment in the tests, which are capable of detecting if a person has previously contracted the virus.

Zambia is reportedly planning to revoke Glencore subsidiary Mopani Copper Mines’ (MCM) mining licences as the company failed to give enough notice before suspending its mining operations in light of the coronavirus outbreak. Mining Licensing Committee secretary Michael Chibonga said in a letter to Mopani chief executive Nathan Bullock that the company placed the mines on care and maintenance without giving sufficient notice to the government.

The mining industry in South Africa couldshed more than 10,000 direct jobs as a result of the nationwide lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Bloomberg quoted a Minerals Council South Africa report as saying that job cuts could rise to over 45,000 in the event of a prolonged shutdown.

AngloGold Ashanti has restarted milling operations at its Cerro Vanguardia mine in Argentina and has increased capacity. It will initially process stockpiles, allowing production to remain near planned levels. The company is working with governments and civil society groups in its operating jurisdictions to help contain the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.