Top 10 largest gold mining companies in 2021 ranked by reserves - report
(Kitco News) - Kitco ranked gold mining companies based on their most recent reported attributable proven & probable reserves in-situ.
Russian gold mining giant Polyus boasts the largest gold reserves base globally. As at 31 December 2021, the company reported 101 million ounces of gold in reserves compared to 104 million ounces of gold as at 31 December 2020. The company said that changes in the estimates from 2020 to 2021 are due to depletion by mining and changes to stockpile inventories due to additions from mining and reclaim for processing, adding that 40% of the company’s estimated ore reserves are attributable to Polyus’ key greenfield project, Sukhoi Log.
Newmont has the second largest gold reserves base across the industry.
For 2021, Newmont reported 92.8 million ounces of gold mineral reserves, slightly lower than the prior year total of 94.2 million ounces. The company said that depletion of 7.1 million ounces and unfavorable net revisions of 0.8 million ounces were largely offset by additions of 6.5 million ounces.
Barrick is third with 69 million ounces of gold reserves reported in 2021, a minor increase over 2020 (68Moz). Reserve replenishment, net of depletion, was achieved at three of Barrick’s tier one gold assets – Kibali, Cortez and Turquoise Ridge – while Bulyanhulu, North Mara, and Phoenix also all achieved this milestone.
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Newcrest sits fourth. The company reported 54 million ounces of gold as at 31 December 2021, a 10% increase compared to 2020 (49Moz). The company said that Red Chris ore reserves initial estimates added 5.6 million ounces of gold; Havieron ore reserve initial estimate added 0.65 million ounces of gold; and Lihir added one million ounces of gold in probable reserves, underpinned by completion of the Phase 14A pre-feasibility study.
Gold Fields is fifth with 47.4 million ounces of gold in reserves reported in 2021 compared to 50.3 million ounces in 2020. A 6% decrease in reserves over 2020 was primarily driven by an increase in cut-off grades, updated resource models and enhanced South of Wrench area mine design and scheduling at South Deep.
On February 8, 2022, the merger of Agnico Eagle with Kirkland Lake Gold was completed. At December 31, 2021, Agnico Eagle's proven and probable mineral reserves were a record 25.7 million ounces of gold. At December 31, 2021, Kirkland Lake Gold's proven and probable mineral reserves were 18.9 million ounces of gold. Therefore, combined gold reserves of the merged company amounted to 44.6 million ounces as at December 31, 2021. Hence, Agnico Eagle sits sixth.
Kinross’ total estimated proven and probable gold reserves at December 31, 2021 were approximately 32.6 million ounces. The increase of 2.7 million ounces in estimated gold reserves compared to December 31, 2020 was mainly a result of the conversion of 3.0 million ounces of resources to probable reserves at Chulbatkan.
Harmony Gold’s total attributable gold mineral reserves amounted to 31.4 million ounces at 30 June 2021, a 32% increase on the 23.8 million ounces declared at 30 June 2020. The gold reserve ounces in South Africa represent 58% while the Papua New Guinea gold reserve ounces represent 42% of Harmony’s total mineral reserves as at 30 June 2021.
AngloGold Ashanti’s ore reserves increased from 29.7 million ounces in December 2020 to 29.8 million ounces in December 2021. This annual net increase of 0.1 million ounces includes additions due to exploration and modelling changes of 4.1 million ounces. This increase was partially offset by depletion of 2.6 million ounces and reductions due to other factors of 1.4 million ounces.
In 2021, Polymetal’s gold reserves increased by 9% year-on-year
to 27.1 Moz on the back of successful near-mine exploration at Nezhda, Veduga and Kutyn (Albazino hub), as well as initial reserve estimates at Elevator (Varvara hub), Saum (Voro hub), and Nevenrekan (Omolon hub).