Obuasi Gold Mine

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Obuasi
Location
Obuasi Gold Mine is located in Ashanti
Obuasi Gold Mine
Obuasi Gold Mine
Location in Ashanti
Location Obuasi
Municipality Obuasi Municipal
Country Ashanti
Coordinates 06°12′N 001°41′W / 6.200°N 1.683°W / 6.200; -1.683Coordinates: 06°12′N 001°41′W / 6.200°N 1.683°W / 6.200; -1.683
Production
Production 381,000
Financial year 2009
History
Opened 1897
Owner
Company Asantehene Osei Tutu II
(Manhyia Palace) 2015‒Present

AngloGold Ashanti 2004‒2014
Website

Monarchy of Ashanti website

AngloGold Ashanti website
Year of acquisition Asantehene Osei Tutu II
(Manhyia Palace) 2015‒Present

AngloGold Ashanti 2004‒2014

The Obuasi Gold Mine is an open-pit and underground gold mine situated near Obuasi, in the City-State Ashanti and Obuasi Gold Mine is one of the top-9 largest gold mines on Earth.[1] The 'land' is customarily owned by the Asantehene King Osei Tutu II.[2][3] The mine is in Obuasi Municipal which lies south of Ashanti capital city Kumasi 39 miles (59.4 kilometers) away south-west of Kumasi or 1 hour 2 minutes road-drive from Obuasi to Kumasi.[4]

Gold mining began at Obuasi Gold Mine more than 112 years ago, in 1897 when it was originally known as the Ashanti Mine.[1]

In 2008, AngloGold Ashanti's Ashantiland operations, consisting of Obuasi and the Iduapriem Gold Mine, contributed 11% to the company's annual production. Both mines became part of AngloGold Ashanti when Ashanti Goldfields Corporation with Sam E. Jonah as chairman merged with AngloGold Corporation of South Africa in the 1990s.[3]

In 2009, the mine employed over 5,700 people.[2] The mine experienced two fatalities in 2008 and one in 2009.[2]

As of 2016 the mine was closed due to profitability issues with only a security force on duty.

History[edit]

Mining at Obuasi begun in 1897, then referred to as the Ashanti Mine.[5]

In an interview Ashanti Kwesi Enyan, the Managing Director of the Obuasi Gold mine, announced that the mine, while potentially rich, faces challenges like returning the mine to profitability, addressing social and environmental issues, improving community engagement and illegal mining.[6] The mine was criticised as early as 1975 for environmental pollution,[7] and continues to do so.[8]

Following heavy losses mining was suspended in late 2014 when about 5,000 local miners were laid off. A large security force remained at the site, but, as of 2016, has been under heavy pressure from local illegal miners. An Obuasi employee was killed in early 2016 by a mob of illegal miners. The owner hopes to redevelop the mine and reopen it as a profitable operation at some point. Plans include reduction of the size of the mine, with a substantial portion returned to the government of Ghana; development of a ramp to access deep high grade ore bodies; and negotiation of mutually agreeable security and environmental agreements with the government of Ghana.[9][10]

Production[edit]

Production figures of the recent past were:

Year Production Grade Cost per ounce
2002[11] 537,219 ounces 4.84 g/t US$ 198
2003[11] 513,163 ounces 4.28 g/t US$217
2004[12] 255,000 ounces 5.27 g/t US$305
2005[12] 391,000 ounces 4.77 g/t US$345
2006[13] 387,000 ounces 4.39 g/t US$395
2007[2] 360,000 ounces 4.43 g/t US$459
2008[2] 357,000 ounces 4.37 g/t US$633
2009[2] 381,000 ounces 5.18 g/t US$630
2010
2011
2012
2013 US$1,820
2014
2015
  • The 2004 results are for the eight month from May to December only.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "World's top 10 gold deposits". 7 August 2013. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Annual Report 2009 AngloGold Ashanti website, accessed: 9 August 2010
  3. ^ a b Country report: Ghana – Obuasi AngloGold Ashanti website, accessed: 9 August 2010
  4. ^ "An Economic History of the Ashanti Goldfields Corporation" (PDF) (PDF). Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  5. ^ Obuasi Gold Mine, Ghana ayiajavon.com, accessed: 9 August 2010
  6. ^ Obuasi Mine targets 500,000 ounces of gold production by 2013 The Mail – Ghana News, accessed: 9 August 2010
  7. ^ Amasa, SK. "Arsenic pollution at Obuasi Goldmine, town, and surrounding countryside". Environ Health Perspect. 12: 131–5. PMC 1475037Freely accessible. PMID 1227854. 
  8. ^ Gold Rush: The impact of gold mining on poor people in Obuasi in Ghana ghana-net.com, accessed: 9 August 2010
  9. ^ Future of Obuasi There are a number of links on this page to history and news. Accessed April 12, 2016
  10. ^ Nicholas Bariyo and Alexandra Wexler (April 11, 2016). "Fortune Hunters Endanger Africa's Abandoned Mines Fights break out as the commodities rout forces mining companies to close shafts". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 12, 2016. In Ghana, AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., the world’s No. 3 gold producer, closed shafts at its Obuasi mine in late 2014, as the mine hemorrhaged cash amid sinking metals prices. Early this year, hundreds of men broke through the 13-mile fence around Obuasi and started prospected for gold there on their own. 
  11. ^ a b Ashanti Annual Report 2003 accessed: 10 August 2010
  12. ^ a b Annual Report 2005 AngloGold Ashanti website, accessed: 9 August 2010
  13. ^ Annual Report 2006 AngloGold Ashanti website, accessed: 9 August 2010

External links[edit]