THE Head of Corporate Affairs and Social Development of Gold Fields Ghana Limited (GFGL), Dr. Toni Aubynn has stated categorically that the company will engage in underground mining only when exploration and other feasibility studies indicate that it is economically viable.
“The company is investigating all options including the underground option, but will do so when the exploration and feasibility confirm that there is enough gold, which is viable underground for economic exploitation, safe and environmentally sound,” he intimated.
Dr. Aubynn said these during an interaction with the Western Regional Press Corps in Takoradi on Wednesday.
He stated that modern technology used to mine underground is quite different from the old methods.
Even though the price of gold in the world market had gone up, the price of inputs such as energy, machinery, chemicals and equipment used in mining operations has also shot up tremendously.
He added that the company is in the process of expanding the existing Carbon In Leach (CIL) plant as well as the North Heap Leach, both in Tarkwa, at a total cost of $175 million.
Dr. Aubynn hinted that the company has always been prompt in paying royalties to the government, but how the money is utilized by the traditional authorities is no business of the company.
Meanwhile, GFGL has donated two flat-screen Pentium four computers and accessories, a 21-inch colour TV, two HP printers costing GH¢4000 (¢40 million) to the Press Centre of the Western Regional Branch of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) in Takoradi.
Receiving the items, Mr. George Naykene, Western Regional Chairman of the GJA thanked GFGL for responding promptly to the association's request.
He said the items would help members in their coverage of the Ghana CAN 2008 Soccer Tournament and the 2008 general elections.
From Mark Essien & Emmanuel Opoku, Takoradi