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China remains top gold producer as Aussi gold output drops in Q3 - Surbiton Associates

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(Kitco News) - China is once again the world's number one gold-producing nation, beating out Australia for the top spot as production in the third quarter dropped.

According to the latest statistic from Australian gold mining consultants, Surbiton Associatest Australian gold mine production declined to 77 tonnes, a drop of 8% compared to the second quarter.

"With gold production figures now available for the first nine months of 2021, it appears that China has taken the lead again as the world's top gold-producing country," said Dr. Sandra Close, a director of Surbiton Associates. "Australia briefly became top producer for the first time, based on gold production figures for the first half of 2021."

Quoting data from China Gold Association, the nation produced 236.7 tonnes of gold in the first nine months of 2021. Meanwhile, Australia's gold production totaled 234 tonnes.

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"It is a close-run thing as to which country will be the world's top gold producer for the whole of 2021," said Close said. "China has been number one since 2007, but Australia is now challenging for that spot."

It still remains a close race for gold production and could come down to the wire. Close noted that the fourth quarter is the strongest period for Australian gold companies.

Close also noted that some unforeseen operational factors impacted third-quarter production.

The consultancy firm said that the outlook for the Australian gold sector remains positive.

"Most Australian gold producers are still enjoying healthy profit margins," Close said. "As is always the case, the US dollar:Australian dollar exchange rate has been an important factor, with the Australian dollar gold price remaining above A$2,400 per ounce since mid-year."

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