Barrick CEO calls Nevada JV talks with Newmont ‘constructive’

Barrick Gold Corp is having “constructive” talks with rival Newmont Mining Corp about a possible joint venture in Nevada, Chief Executive Mark Bristow told the CNBC television network on Thursday.

“We are engaged in a constructive manner,” Bristow said on CNBC’s “Mad Money” program. “We are talking. That’s a good thing.”

Major shareholders have pushed for a Nevada JV, expressing concern a full combination of both companies – which Barrick wants – could be too complex.

Newmont has already rejected Barrick’s $18 billion offer for the full company. Bristow said it was unlikely he could sweeten the offer.

“I don’t give away premiums that haven’t been earned,” Bristow said.

(By Ernest Scheyder, Editing by G Crosse)

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