Brushing aside comments from Gold Fields that the sector could be in serious trouble in five years' time if changes are not made to the way South African mines are operated, Harmony Gold CEO Graham Briggs said on Wednesday that Harmony has gone through a restructuring and investment process to line its mines up for growth over the next five years, BDLive reports.
The Gold Fields executives' warning came as the company has come under pressure from some shareholders to separate its international assets from those in South Africa. Ramping-up their mines after lengthy illegal strikes that have shaved billions in revenue from their books, the country's gold producers are losing the benefit of record high rand gold prices, hovering around R500,000/kg.
Briggs, however, said Harmony will avoid the downturn Gold Fields foresees and grow its SA production to 1.7-million ounces by 2017 as its major growth projects at Doornkop, Phakisa and Kusasalethu come into full production. "Harmony's in a different situation," Briggs told BDLive
, adding that in the past five years the company has undergone "a lot of reviewing of our assets, restructuring and spending a lot of capital. We don't suddenly need to start that process because the industry is in a bit of turmoil."