GOLD MINE output from South Africa – the No.1 producer throughout the 20th century – fell a further 6.2% in April compared with a year earlier, the official data agency Statistics South Africa said Thursday.
Extending the last decade's 50% decline in annual Gold Mining output – and confirming the nation's slide to world No.4 – April's drop comes after the 15% year-on-year fall reported for the first 3 months of the year.
April's declining Gold Mining output contrasted once more with South Africa's overall minerals output, which rose 2.7% compared with April '09. Non-gold mining output rose 4.0%.
Wolfgang Wrzesniok-Rossbach of German refining group Heraeus notes in his latest Precious Metals Weekly that latest figures also show Gold Mining output dropping in both Russia and Peru. The Ministry of Mines & Energy in Lima attributed Peru's 12% year-on-year decline to a 37% fall in production at the giant Yanococha project.
China, in contrast – the world's No.1 miner in 2009 – produced 28.8 tonnes of gold in April, reports the latest Commodities Weekly from French bank Natixis, "up 6% month-on-month and taking output for the first 4 months of the year to 99 tonnes, up 5.5% year-to-date."
Chinese authorities also announced the discovery of 26 tonnes of Gold Mining reserves in Xinjiang province, the region's largest discovery in 20 years.
Global Gold Mining production rose 7% in 2009, according to the GFMS consultancy, led by growth in Chinese output.
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