Make Kitco Your Homepage

China keeps burning through its mine gold reserves fastest in the world - report

Kitco News

Editor's Note: With so much market volatility, stay on top of daily news! Get caught up in minutes with our speedy summary of today's must-read news and expert opinions. Sign up here!

(Kitco News) - According to the preliminary data released by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), global recoverable mine gold reserves amounted to about 54,000 metric tonnes in 2021, which is 2% more than 53,000 tonnes reported in 2020.

USGS defines recoverable mine reserves (not to be confused with resources) as the part of the reserve base that could be economically extracted or produced at the time of determination.

Australia boasts the world's largest endowment of mine gold reserves (11,000 tonnes), followed by Russia (6,800 tonnes), South Africa (5,000 tonnes) and the United States (3,000 tonnes).

Largest countries by mine gold reserves in 2021, tonnes. Source: USGS.

As Kitco reported before, China is the top gold producer with 370 tonnes of the yellow metal mined in 2021.

At the same time, China is facing a rapid depletion of its current estimated domestic mine gold reserves. Reserves-to-production (R/P) ratio that represents the "burn rate" of proven reserves of mineral commodities when applying current levels of domestic mine production shows that China is in the "red zone" for future supplies of the yellow metal.

Global graphite production up in 2021 as China cements its top producer status

In fact, China is burning through its mine gold reserves fastest in the world.

Gold R/P ("burn rate") ratio, years.

Gold reserves-to-production (R/P) ratio, years. Source: USGS, Kitco.

In order to overcome shortages of essential mineral commodities, as well as to secure long-term sustainable supplies for its ambitious economic development strategy, the Government of China empowered and encouraged a number of domestic state-owned and private companies to actively pursue mining deals throughout the world.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.