BELO HORIZONTE: South African gold miner Anglogold Ashanti will invest $250 million each year through 2016 to raise its Brazilian output of the precious metal by two thirds, its chief executive said on Wednesday.
The world's No. 3 gold producer plans to take output in Brazilian operations from 420,000 to 700,000 ounces in that five-year period, Mark Cutifani told reporters at a mining conference sponsored by Brazilian miners' association Ibram.
The company plans to expand existing mines at Cuiaba in the Mato Grosso state and Corrego do Sitio in the important mining state of Minas Gerais, as well as the Serra Grande mine in the neighboring state of Goias.
The executive said he expected gold to trade inside a range of $1,600 and $2,200 over the next 12 months. Gold prices have been volatile in the last few months. Spot gold was down 3 percent on Wednesday at $1,600 an ounce by 2.21 p.m. EDT.
Ibram data ranks Anglogold as Brazil's No. 2 gold producer behind rival Kinross .
Brazil is the world's No. 12 gold producer but expects to surge up the ranks with a government forecast that output of the precious metal will reach 180 tonnes by 2022 compared with 55 tonnes in 2008.
Globally, the company will invest between $1.6 billion and $2.2 billion in the 2012-2013 period and it plans to raise production by one quarter to 5.5 million ounces by 2015, up from 4.4 million currently.
Cutifani said the company's production in South Africa could climb to 1.7 million ounces by 2016. Two large projects in the Democratic Republic of Congo should jointly turn out 1 million ounces by 2015, he said.
Production in Australia should double in the next five years from its current level of around 300,000 ounces.
Copyright Reuters, 2011