WINDHOEK – The mining industry is all eyes on the Navachab gold mine outside Karibib and many within the industry would like to see its sale finalised in order to alleviate any doubts of instability within the mining sector.
Navachab is being sold by AngloGold Ashanti as part of the group’s cost-cutting measures and the gold mine is being sold through a closed-door bidding process. When New Era contacted AngloGold’s senior vice-president for corporate finance, Paul Dennison, for an update on the process, his response was: “I am not in a position to comment at this stage.”
Navachab is an open pit gold mine that has been operating since 1989. The mine produced about 70 000 ounces of gold last year at cash costs of US$929 (about N$9 290) per ounce.
Local media last week reported that South African precious metals company, Pan African Resources, had teamed up with Canadian miner, Giyani Gold, to bid for Navachab at a price of N$1.3 billion. However, in a carefully worded statement released last week Friday, Pan African Resources noted the press reports but said there was no certainty it would participate in any transaction relating to Navachab. “Shareholders are advised that Pan African is not at a stage in any negotiations for any asset or venture which would necessitate exercising caution when trading in the company’s securities,” the precious metals miner said in a statement.
Other bidders listed as vying for Navachab are Vedanta Zinc International Group and B2Gold, another Canadian company that owns the Otjikoto gold mine. Vedanta Zinc International Group, which owns the Skorpion zinc mine and refinery in southern Namibia, has expressed keen interest in purchasing Navachab.
Meanwhile, Giyani Gold, the Canadian gold exploration firm, has joined Pan African Resources in distancing itself from speculation it is bidding to buy AngloGold Ashanti’s Namibian mine, Navachab.
“The company does not comment on any potential transactions or ventures, and when appropriate Giyani Gold will provide details in accordance with its disclosure policy,” it said in an announcement to the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Last week, Giyani Gold executive chairman Duane Parnham was quoted as saying: “It’s an interesting project. Being a Namibian explorer you can’t deny that’s an interesting asset. So we’ll see, but I can’t comment further.”