Sunyani, Feb. 28, GNA - Newmont Gold Ghana Limited has spent additional 20 million dollars to carry out further exploration works to expand its mining activities at its Ahafo Plant Site at Kenyasi Number Two in the Brong-Ahafo Region.
By 2013, it is estimated that the Ahafo mine together with Akyem, should be producing about a million ounces of gold every year, Mr Kwame Agbeko Azumah, Communication Manager, disclosed this at a press soiree in Sunyani.
The mine currently produces 545,000 ounces of gold, representing 10 percent of Ghana\'s gold production for 2010.
Mr Azumah said the media continued to be an important partner and this accounted for the transparency and openness that had underlined the company\'s relationship with the media since the beginning of the Ahafo operation in 2003.
\"We have always counted on the media to help us tell the world about our activities both within and outside our operational communities, which has generally contributed to the appreciation of the role of mining in Ghana\'s socio-economic development,\" he stated.
Mr Azumah said as part of its growth story, Newmont\'s fourth pit, Amoma, became operational last year and had also begun the Subika underground exploration project.
Mr Azumah said the Ahafo project also received international accreditation, an endorsement of the management systems for the environment, health and safety performance.
\"The accreditation, the ISO 140001 ISO 1400 and OHSASAS 160001 rank among the best in the industry,\" he added.
On its social responsibilities, Mr Azumah said Newmont Ahafo Foundation (NADEF), which was launched in 2008 and for which the company commits one dollar per ounce of gold mined and one percent of net profit, continued to be a viable vehicle for sustainable community development for the company\'s host communities.
Under NADEF, 15 key infrastructure projects across the 10 communities such as teachers\' quarters, classroom blocks, libraries and mechanized borehole systems had been completed, Mr Azumah said.
He disclosed that 956 students from the host communities in second cycle and tertiary institutions were beneficiaries of scholarships provided through the fund.
So far an amount of 1l.2 million dollars had been spent in the region whilst the fund had accumulated approximately five million dollars, he added.
Mr Kojo Bedu-Addo, External Affairs Manager, said the company would be working hard this year to achieve a production target of between 550,000 and 590,000 ounces.
He said the Subika underground exploration decline project, which was about 2913 meters completed, should significantly add to the production capacity as well as the mine life when it became operational.
Mr Bedu-Addo commended the media for their contributions to the growth of the mine and gave the assurance that Newmont would continue to work in harmony with the media in the region.
Mr Ian Motey, out-going Regional Chairman of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), commended the company for its continued support to the media.
He appealed to management of Newmont to organise periodic training programmes to get the media to become more abreast with their activities.
Mr Motey, regional correspondent of the New Times Corporation, thanked his colleagues for their support and advised them to give similar support to the other executive members of the association.