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Colombia announces gold find that could double production by 2011

Colombia announces gold find that could double production by 2011

Colombian authorities have announced a major gold find that would double the country's production of the metal by 2011 and which they claim could prove to be one of the 10 biggest deposits in the world.
A foreign mining company uncovered the deposit and informed the government, which announced the discovery last week but said details would not be released until February.
But President Alvaro Uribe appeared unable to hide his excitement last week.
"How am I going to keep a secret this big until February?" Uribe asked in a Dec. 20 speech, revealing that Mining and Energy Minister Hernan Martinez had that morning told him of the discovery, which will require an initial US$2 billion (euro1.38 billion) investment and will double the nation's gold output by 2011.
Authorities didn't give the name of the foreign mining company, but Bogota's El Tiempo newspaper reported that the deposit is in the central state of Tolima, and was discovered by Johannesburg-based AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., one of the world's largest gold producers.
Charles Carter, spokesman for the company, on Thursday confirmed that the company has an active exploration program in Colombia, but declined to comment on El Tiempo's report, saying it was "premature to discuss" any of the company's specific findings.
AngloGold Ashanti has projects in 10 countries on four continents, including the U.S., Brazil, Russia and China, its Web site states.
The company has been actively exploring for gold in Colombia since 2000, and has two large drilling projects in the country's center, along with six other "early-stage" projects.
High gold prices, which have nearly tripled in the last ten years, are pushing mining companies to boost exploration efforts, the Bogota-based newspaper said.
But in Colombia, yearly gold production fell by more than half last year to 15.7 tons from 37.7 tons in 2005, El Tiempo reported, citing the nation's mining institute, as attacks and harassment by leftist rebels forced many mines to close.


Updated : 2021-05-07 15:29 GMT+08:00