AngloGold Ashanti to keep cutting costs, jobs

AngloGold Ashanti (NYSE:AU) (JSE:ANG) reported a smaller second-quarter net loss Monday but said mine closures and layoffs will continue as part of its plan to cut $500 million from operating costs by December, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Lower gold prices and higher capital spending overshadowed a 17% increase in output and lower operating costs in the quarter, the newspaper said.

Gold production rose despite labour disputes lasting several months, especially in the platinum sector, with workers demanding better wages.

The paper said the company's net loss in the three months to June 30 shrank to $80 million from $2.17 billion a year earlier as higher production at its South African, other African, and Australian operations more than made up for declining output at its Brazilian mines.

Meanwhile, AngloGold Ashanti will keep talking with a range of stakeholders in Ghana while working to address the Obuasi mine's long poor performance there, according to citifmonline.

Restructuring the mine, whose output has been falling since 1995, depends on crucial consents that are likely to mean reducing its operations and the number of workers.

“Addressing the underperformance at Obuasi remains a key objective for us,” Fred Attakumah, managing director of AngloGold Ashanti Ghana, was quoted by the website as saying.

“We’re committed to engaging with the Government of Ghana, our employees and the other important local and regional stakeholders throughout this process, as we work to return this key asset to sustainable, long-term profitability for the benefit of all constituencies."

Click here to read the company's financial report for the quarter and six months to June 30.