Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE:GOLD)(TSX:ABX) – Barrick’s drive to transform the Lumwana copper mine into a Tier One1 asset with a life extending beyond 2060 is picking up speed with a strong performance in the past quarter adding impetus to its continuing production ramp-up.
Briefing media at a site visit here today July 7th, Barrick president and chief executive Mark Bristow said the mine’s full potential was only now being revealed.
Additional expansion opportunities, identified through an updated geological model, are currently being assessed, while drilling at the Kababisa prospect highlights potential mining flexibility through higher grades.
The Lumwana pre-feasibility study is progressing in line with our plans to transform its long-term copper profile through the delivery of the envisioned super pit.
“Since Barrick refocused its strategy in Africa in 2019, Lumwana has become a key element in the expansion of our strategic copper portfolio and a significant contributor to our bottom line.
At the same time its importance to Zambia has grown. Since 2019 it has contributed more than $2.3 billion to the country’s economy in the form of royalties, taxes, salaries and purchases from local suppliers,” he said.
Barrick has a global policy of sourcing its suppliers locally and last year it spent $432 million, 83% of its total procurement, with Zambian suppliers and contractors.
It has also launched a “Business Accelerator Program” to build the capacity of Zambian contractors in the mining supply chain.
Similarly, Barrick is committed to local employment. Currently 99.3% of Lumwana’s employees and 98% of its contractors are Zambian nationals, both industry-leading statistics.
Lumwana is a participant in the United Nations’ REDD+ project, which is designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation, and the mine has engaged with its communities on this initiative.