South Africa’s AngloGold Ashanti on Friday reported a 72% jump in annual earnings, underpinned by higher bullion prices and solid performance from its Kibali operations in Democratic Republic of Congo.
The gold miner’s headline earnings per share – the primary profit measure in South Africa – rose to 91 cents in the year ended Dec. 31, 2019, compared with 53 cents a year earlier, inline with what the firm had flagged to the market.
“We’re generating strong cash flow from our operations, and that’s allowing us to increase returns to shareholders, strengthen our balance sheet and invest in our ore bodies,” Chief Executive Officer Kelvin Dushnisky said in a statement.
Kibali is co-owned by AngloGold, Barrick Gold and DRC’s state-owned Societe Miniere de Kilo-Moto.
AngloGold said it has streamlined its portfolio, which includes selling its South African businesses, the world’s deepest gold mine, and assets in Mali and Argentina.
“We’re working hard to deliver on our strategy and capture the wider margin in this strong gold price environment,” Dushnisky said.
Last week, AngloGold said it would sell its remaining South African assets to Harmony Gold for $300 million as it focused on assets that deliver higher returns.
However, the miner’s full-year production came in at 3.281 million ounces, compared with 3.400 million ounces in the year-ago period, as operational challenges in its Siguiri, Sunrise Dam, and Cerro Vanguardia mines weighed.
Geita operations in Tanzania delivered its highest production of 604,000 ounces in 13 years, AngloGold said, adding that it has approved a dividend of 165 cents per share compared with 95 cents in 2018.
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