Top 10 World’s Biggest Gold-Mining Countries
Gold is unmistakably the world’s most precious metal, not only for its sublime beauty but also for its outstanding durability and capacity to conduct electricity. As far as gold mining is concerned, 90 countries are currently extracting the expensive metal, but 20 of them have deposits that are so rich that they manage to cover about 75% of the world’s production. Today, we’re going to tell you a bit about the world’s top 10 gold-mining countries, so that you may get a better picture regarding the immense wealth that can be found in their mines.
Ghana is a sovereign African state that enjoys plentiful gold reserves of about 1,600 tons. However, the country’s official gold holdings are about 8.7 tons, which make up for 8.4% of its foreign currency. Gold mining has always been a popular line of work in Ghana, more so between 2011 and 2012 when the production increased by 17%. Naturally, this increase in production coincided with an increase in the price of gold, but we don’t expect it to rise further anytime soon, especially in the current global economy.
Even though Uzbekistan did not report its official gold holdings, its State Geological Committee declared that the country owns over 40 deposits with a total estimated reserve of approximately 1,700 tons. That’s a lot of gold to dig out, but fortunately, Uzbekistan has major gold producing companies that hope to mine about 120 tons per year. The largest and most important gold producers in Uzbekistan are called Metallurgy Combinat and Navoi Mining, both sitting on $500 billion worth of gold deposits.
When a country goes through a political crisis, its overall production output tends to shrink. This is exactly what happened to Indonesia’s gold mining sector recently, and if that wasn’t bad enough, certain development projects were halted because of illegal gold mining, which caused the country to lose even more money. Nonetheless, Indonesia’s gold reserves weigh about 3,000 tons, which is quite a lot if we are honest. The country’s official gold holdings are 73.1 tons, which is not too shabby either.
Canada is no longer the gold-mining giant that it used to be, since it now has holdings of just 3.4 tons. However, a Canadian firm named Barrick Gold enjoyed the highest gold production level of all other companies of its kind, flaunting 7.42 million ounces.
Peru’s official gold holdings are 34.7 tons, while its mine production output is 170 tons. Even though the country’s gold production dropped by about 3% in 2012, it is still one of the most impressive in the world in this regard, which is why it sits at no.6 in our top 10.
South Africa wasn’t doing so well gold-wise in 2012, because that was its second-worst year of gold production after the gold mine strike of 1905. Because of this, South African gold represented just 6% of the world’s total output at the time. Nonetheless, South Africa’s 125 tons of gold holdings are nothing to be ashamed of, not to mention that the world’s third-largest gold producing company, AngloGold Ashanti, is based in Johannesburg.
Russia is the first “bad boy” on our list of the world’s biggest gold miners, since it holds no less than 937.8 tons of gold. Moreover, total Russian gold reserves are estimated at about 5,000 tons, while the country’s gold production increased by 6.8% in 2012.
The United States of America houses one of the world’s top gold producers – Newmont Mining, which reported an output of 4.98 million ounces of gold in 2012. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, the USA has the largest official gold holdings in the world: 8,133.5 tons, which equals 76.3% of the country’s foreign currency. Wow!
Australia is currently the second largest gold producer in the world, its main mines being located in New South Wales and in its Southern and Western regions. Australia declared that its official gold holdings are 79.9 tons, while the entire continent’s reserves are estimated at about 7,400 tons. Two thirds of the world’s total gold production originates in Western Australian mines. That’s a lot!
Finally, the world’s largest gold producing country is none other than China, and we can’t say that we are surprised since this country is also one of the most economically advanced. In 2012, China was leading the world’s gold production for the sixth year in a row, while its gold production saw an increase of 11.7% during the same year. Since 2003, China has doubled its gold producing capabilities, which just goes to show how dedicated it is to become the world’s leading economy. The largest gold producer in the country is definitely the Zijin Mining Group, which reported a production of 2,770,428 ounces of gold in 2011. China holds a total of 1,054.1 tons of gold, while its mine production is at 403 tons.