26 November

The increase in investment demand for gold is expected to offset the slump in consumer demand this year triggered by the ongoing pandemic, according to the World Gold Council. Consumer demand, which accounts for 40% of total gold demand, declined in the January-September period, while jewellery demand plunged 41% to 904t in the same period. Another factor affecting the declining consumer demand is the high prices of the metal, buoyed by it’s status as a safe haven asset.

Gold miner Troy Resources cancelled its production guidance for the current year due to pandemic related issues at its Karouni mine in Guyana. A coronavirus outbreak was reported at the mine, with 23 workers at the site testing positive leading to the suspension of operations. The company said that the country’s current situation with the pandemic makes it difficult for the mine to operate at 100% capacity.

The move towards automation and digitalisation in the mining sector was advanced by the coronavirus pandemic, according to leading miners and industry partners at the International Mining and Resource Conference. Lockdown restrictions forced miners to reduce workforces to curb the spread of virus and pursue digital strategies. The new trend could help in reducing costs, completing mining operations with fewer workers and also reduce pollution at the mines.