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October 16, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Barrick Gold forecasts drop in Q3 gold production – Minerals Council VP says workers health is top priority – Codelco resumes normal mining operations

By Matthew Hall

16 October

Canadian miner Barrick Gold has forecast its gold output to decline by 10.8% in Q3 as the company’s Porgera gold mine in Papua New Guinea was closed during the quarter. The mine’s lease was not extended by the Papua New Guinea government in April owing to protests from the local community and environmental concerns.

Zanele Matlala, vice president of Minerals Council South Africa, said the country’s mining industry is taking all necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of its employees. Addressing a health webinar, Ms. Matlala said that the mining sector had registered 17,000 Covid-19 cases and 190 deaths so far. She added that the Masoyise Health Programme was established to address occupational health concerns in the industry.

Mountain Province Diamonds, a Canadian diamond company, announced a 16% decline in production in the third quarter compared to the same period in 2019. The decline in production was attributed to the ongoing pandemic, although Q3 production levels were still higher when compared to Q2 figures.

Chile’s government-owned copper mining company, Codelco, reported that it has resumed production, following disruption caused due to Covid-19. The miner was forced to cut its labour force and halt expansion plans due to the pandemic. The company’s CEO Octavio Araneda said that the company aims to meet its yearly production goals.

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