Earnings from proceeds of gold sales in Ethiopia, one of Africa’s leading producers of the metal dropped 30% as global market demand slumped, according to a report.
The ministry of trade in Ethiopia said the slump in gold production has resulted in the north African state earning a paltry US$369.31 million from the projected US$774.5 million during the 10 months to date, the Global Bulletin reported citing Anadolu news agency.
The drop in revenue from proceeds of gold mined in the country was attributed to the global gold market fluctuations which prompted an Australian company, Nyota Minerals Limited operating in the country to delay gold production in western Ethiopia; it said citing ministry deputy spokesperson, Chala Bonsa as having told Anadolu Agency.
“Gold production by Nyota Minerals has been delayed due to the unstable global gold market,” it said. “But it is expected to commence production,” Bonsa added.
In 2013, Nyota Minerals Limited found a new gold deposit in western Ethiopia, some 500km from the capital. It recently reported that “it has entered into a conditional agreement to sell its remaining 25% stake in the Tulu Kapi Gold Project in Ethiopia to KEFI Minerals.
On whether the ministry of trade was aware of the deal, Bonsa said “the company has informed the ministry that it has changed its name from Nyota Minerals to KEFI Minerals three months ago.”
“Our purpose is to monitor that the company fulfills obligations stated in the agreement that it has signed with the ministry to explore gold,”
Bonsa said, however, is cited as stating further that the Australian company is expected to enter production within the remaining months of the current year. Nyota Minerals Limited (Nyota) is a mineral exploration and development company dual listed on the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange (AIM: NYO.L) and the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX: NYO.AX).
It focuses on the exploration and concurrent development of Tulu Kapi, its flagship project in Western Ethiopia. Total Inferred JORC Resource containing 1.46 million ounces of gold (15.96 million tones at 2.84g/t gold).
The Company is actively exploring several priority targets proximal to Tulu Kapi as well as regional gold targets in the northern blocks which Nyota believes have the potential to become future standalone projects.
On 30 December 2013 the company announced the completion of the sale of a majority (75%) stake in its subsidiary; Nyota Minerals (Ethiopia) limited which holds the Tulu Kapi and proximal licences. As a result of this transaction it now holds an interest of 12.5% in fellow AIM gold company KEFI Minerals plc, the company said on its website.