Author: Ekow Dontoh (Bloomberg)
Posted: Thursday , 03 Oct 2013
AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., the world’s third-largest producer of the metal, said it plans to cut 400 jobs at its Obuasi mine in Ghana by end of the year to rein in costs as the decline in the price of bullion erodes profit.
“The current cost structure is not appropriate; we are transitioning to a more mechanized operation,” Mark Morcombe, the senior vice president in charge of the mine, said in a Sept. 30 interview in the capital, Accra. “The transition is for a three-year period, which will result in more efficient operations.” Obuasi employs 4,800 people.
To combat higher costs and the retreat in the bullion price, Johannesburg-based AngloGold suspended its dividend, is cutting spending and exploration and is laying off 40 percent of the 2,000 employees in its corporate offices. The company, with 21 operations in 10 countries, reported a loss in the second quarter ended June after the metal’s price had dropped 23 percent in the period, a record quarterly decrease.