Kibali Mines in North Eastern part of D.R. Congo is run and managed by Barrick Gold and in 2018, the company has released figures showing the mine produced 750,000 ounces of gold
The Kibali mine, located in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and one of the largest gold mines in Africa produced 807,251 ounces of gold in 2018, above its target of 750,000 ounces and 35% higher than its output the previous year.
A single ounce of gold is retailing at 1157.08 USD in the current market meaning the mine raked in US 934 Million with a bit of adjustments due to fluctuations of global gold prices.
Barrick Gold, the operators of the mine attribute this high catch to successful ramp-up in underground production and a steady improvement in the processing plant recovery and throughput.
The mine, which sits in the northeast of the DRC, approximately 220km east of the capital of the Haut Uele province, Isiro, 150km west of the Ugandan border town of Arua comprises an integrated open pit and an underground operation as well as a 7.2Mtpa processing plant.
First gold was poured in 2013 from open pit operations and commissioning of the full underground operation was completed at the end of 2017.
The mine is owned by Kibali Goldmines SA (Kibali) which is a joint venture company effectively owned 45% by each of Barrick and AngloGold Ashanti, and 10% by Société Miniére de Kilo-Moto (SOKIMO).
Barrick president and chief executive Mark Bristow told a media briefing that the record production was driven by the shaft operating at nameplate specification and the optimization of the underground materials handling system which has placed Kibali at the leading edge of gold mine automation in Africa.
Despite the high activity level, the mine recorded its safest year to date, with no lost-time injuries in the fourth quarter and no significant environmental incident.
Bristow said the mine continued to offset the impact of its operations through environmental projects such as the 10,130 indigenous trees planted on the site last year, as well as biodiversity initiatives.
On the health front, the malaria and HIV prevalence rates continued to decrease and stood at 12.9% and 2.8% respectively at the year end.
The resettlement of 1,478 families from the Gorumbwa site to a new village has been successfully completed and will allow the development of the next satellite pit in the mine plan. In addition, continuing brownfields exploration around the mine has identified numerous opportunities for reserve replacement along the KZ trend and around KCD.
Bristow noted that Kibali’s partnership philosophy was continuing to deliver dividends to the local economy, with $39 million paid to Congolese contractors in the last quarter of 2018 alone.
“Our commitment to the DRC, made 10 years ago when Randgold started developing Kibali, has not dimmed, and under the new banner of Barrick we expect to continue to make a significant and growing contribution to the country’s economy and to unlock further value for all our stakeholders,” he said.
With mining operations and projects in 15 countries, including Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Côte d’Ivoire, DRC, Dominican Republic, Mali, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, USA, and Zambia, Barrick has the lowest total cash cost position among its senior gold peers according to a recent report by Wood Mackenzie an independent third party research and consultancy firm that provides data for, among others, the metals and mining industry.