Barrick urges AJN to drop plans to buy into Kibali mine

Kibali gold mine. (Image courtesy of Randgold Resources.)

Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX) (NYSE: GOLD) is formally asking Canadian junior AJN Resources to give up plans to acquire a 10% interest in its Kibali gold mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The world’s second-largest gold miner and AngloGold Ashanti, which each own 45% of the mine, said they had not been consulted about the transaction even though the stake’s owner Société Minière de Kilo-Moto (SOKIMO) is not allowed to transfer or sell its Kibali shares without their approval.

The two partners said the sale, announced earlier this month, undervalues the asset, which last year beat production guidance of 750,000 ounces of gold by a substantial margin, delivering 814,027 ounces.

“Barrick won’t support the sale for reasons of valuation as well as process,” chief executive, Mark Bristow, told Reuters on Wednesday.

Already one of the world’s most highly automated underground gold mines, Kibali continues its technological advance with the introduction of truck and drill training simulators and the integration of systems for staff safety tracking and ventilation demand control.

The simulators, Barrick said in January, will also be used to train operators at the company’s Tanzania mines.

(With files from Reuters)

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