AngloGold's shares slammed as Ghana mine remains shut

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AngloGold Ashanti reinvestment projects remain on track to improve operating flexibility and access to higher grades.
AngloGold Ashanti reinvestment projects remain on track to improve operating flexibility and access to higher grades.
Jack Vearey/ Getty Images

AngloGold Ashanti, which last year exited its mining operations in South Africa, saw its net half-year profit decline in the first half in sharp contrast to what has been reported by its peers in the mining sector.

The gold producer - which has operations in Ghana, Tanzania, the DRC, Australia and South America - said net profit for the six months to end of June was $362 million compared to $382 million seen in the corresponding period in 2020. AngloGold Ashanti sold off its last remaining gold assets in South Africa to Harmony in a R5 billion transaction.

Operations at Obuasi in Ghana remain suspended after an accident in May and the interruption contributed to a drop in production, with 1.2 million ounces produced during the period, compared to 1.5 million ounces a year earlier. The mine should be open by year-end, the company said.

The company said it expects 2021 production to be in the 2.5 million ounces to 2.6 million ounces range, down from previous guidance in the 2.7 million ounces to 2.9 million ounces range.

This helped to send the company's share price down almost 12% to R247 on Friday. It share price has now lost almost 20% this year. 

Still, the company's adjusted net debt declined by 41% year-on-year to $850 million, from $1.431 billion at 30 June 2020. The company also declared its first half-year dividend (6c per share) - according to Bloomberg, its first since 2013. 

Interim CEO Christine Ramon said AngloGold Ashanti reinvestment projects remain on track to improve operating flexibility and access to higher grades.

"We are also pursuing operating and capital efficiencies over the remainder of the year," said Ramon who assumed the position following the resignation of Kelvin Dushnisky. Alberto Calderon is set to take over as CEO in September. 

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