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Barrick strikes deals for 2 Latin America projects

Bnamericas Published: Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Barrick strikes deals for 2 Latin America projects

Toronto-based Barrick Gold has renewed its commitment to Latin America by entering into agreements in Argentina and the Dominican Republic. 

Earlier this week, the company signed an option agreement with Colorado-based Golden Minerals to earn 70% of the El Quevar silver project in Salta province, Argentina. 

Barrick will purchase US$1mn of Golden Minerals shares through a private placement and must spend US$10mn on exploration over eight years. By the end of the last year of the agreement, the gold major must deliver a prefeasibility study with mineral resources of not less than 2Moz gold equivalent. 

Between 2004 and 2012, Golden Minerals drilled approximately 400 holes at the project identifying a primary resource. The property was put on care and maintenance in early 2013 due to falling metal prices, but in 2017 the company came back to the field. 

Last year, Golden Minerals identified a new area of high-grade silver and started to seek a partner to contribute with further exploration at the project. 

Also in Argentina, Barrick recently announced that it has expanded the life of the Veladero gold-silver mine by at least 10 years following a review of its strategy and business plan. 

Dominican Republic

Also on Tuesday, Barrick said it has bought a 13.67% shareholding in Vancouver-based Precipitate Gold, which owns a project adjacent to its Pueblo Viejo golden-silver-copper mine in the Dominican Republic. 

The transaction grants Barrick the right to earn 70% of Precipitate’s Pueblo Grande project by investing at least US$10mn in fieldwork, completing at least 7,500m of drilling and delivering a prefeasibility study before the sixth anniversary of the deal.  

Based on its current operating assets, ongoing sustaining projects and exploration initiatives, last month Barrick unveiled a 10-year gold production plan in which it aims to maintain output of around 5Moz of gold annually until 2029. 

Barrick also plans to expand the Pueblo Viejo mine, a 60:40 JV with Newmont, by investing US$1.3bn,

COVID-19

And Barrick agreed to donate part of the Lama camp equipment which is not currently in use to help Argentina’s San Juan province where Veladero is located, to fight COVID-19.

Barrick’s donation includes 1,000 beds, 59 shipping containers and two housing modules to host 280 people, according to local press reports.

The Lama camp is part of the suspended Pascua Lama project that straddles the border with Chile.

Photo credit: Golden Minerals

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