The World’s Top 10 Gold Producers
Although gold is mined here in Canada, the shimmering precious metal is mined around the world on every continent except Antarctica (yet)!
The world’s top ten mining businesses produced more than 27 million ounces of gold in 2020 alone, making up more than 20% of the entire gold market. As of 2021 this is a list of the top 10 producers in the world, what they do and how they became the biggest and the best.
|Rank||Company||Headquarters||Country||2020 Production (Moz)|
|4||AngloGold Ashanti||Johannesburg||South Africa||2.81|
|6||Gold Fields||Johannesburg||South Africa||2.13|
|9||Polymetal International||St. Petersburg||Russia||1.40|
|10||Harmony Gold||Johannesburg||South Africa||1.38|
This American mining giant produces almost as much gold as the bottom four gold producers on the top 10 list combined. Newmont operates throughout North America, into the Caribbean and even into Australia. And as it produces far more than any other business, it also has the largest gold reserve, with tens of millions of troy ounces in its possession.
Although the company was founded in 1916, it wasn’t until restructuring and mergers in the late 1980s which continued over the following decades to cement its position as #1 in the world.
The second-largest gold producer in the world is Canadian owned and operates in 13 countries around the world. While it continues to successfully mine in large open pits and underground mines it continues to grow its gold reserves, now estimated at more than 70 million ounces. Although its operations are large and complex, Barrick Gold has a goal to have net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, leading the way for major gold miners.
This young company, formed in 2004, manages seven percent of global gold production using high-tech mining operations that focus on opportunities in mostly Africa and South America. AngloGold Ashanti continues to heavily invest in exploration and continuing reserve growth for future benefits. Operations in Africa have historically been plagued with safety incidents, but investments in mining processes has reduced this with the goal to have zero fatalities. (2019 was the first year with zero deaths in AngloGold Ashanti’s mining operations.)
This Russian-owned enterprise only operates in one country, but commands control over its mining, which is quite significant considering the output potential of Russia’s mines. It has been able to keep costs low with its sizable mines and technology; Polyus has one of the lowest production costs per troy ounce among top producers. Those who follow the production potential of Russia estimated that Polyus would become the #1 gold producer in the world by 2024, but the more recent Russian invasion of Ukraine has put its rise up this list on hold.
This Canadian success story has spread its operations around the world, with most of its gold production in the U.S.A. Through open-pit mining and underground mining operations, it controls sites with decades of gold potential, including the Paracatu mine, one of the largest surface mines in Brazil. Its success has been attributed to its commitment to safety, innovation and strong forward-thinking leadership.
Australia’s largest mining company commands large mines with an annual gold production output of more than 1.6 million ounces. This gold miner had its beginnings more than 100 years ago, and like so many other successful mining companies was a part of a series of consolidations that helped to solidify its lead with a focus on safety, efficiency and exploration to reduce its costs, increase alliances and branch out into many other minerals and metals.
The South African gold mining giant has operations spanning from South Africa to Ghana to Peru to Australia, with gold mines that have increased its reserves and production capabilities similarly to other Top 10 gold producers. With so much volatility in the trading markets, Gold Fields has performed better than its competitors and looks to climb this list as Russian businesses decline.
Yet another Canadian gold mining company is counted as one of the top 10 of the world. The Agnico Eagle mines can be found in Canada, Finland and Mexico, with operations that also extract silver, zinc and copper. In its possession is the expansive LaRonde mine in Quebec, the deepest gold mine in North America, and the Kittilä mine in Finland, one of the largest known gold deposits in Europe.
The leadership and operations of this Canadian business often ranks high within industry circles, especially for environmental, community and leadership reasons.
Mining throughout Russia, Kazakhstan and Armenia, Polymetal International manages to make the top 10 gold miners list, but perhaps not for long as the Russian attack on Ukraine takes its toll on this business. Although it sits lower on the gold list, it ranks third in silver production and is also the largest silver producer in Russia. Like many other mines, controlling pollution is a challenge, but through sustainability initiatives Polymetal has lower CO2 emissions per kilotonnes than many others on this list.
The South African gold miner has large interests in local production in the Witwatersrand Basin, with additional exploration taking place in Papua New Guinea. As Harmony Gold expands its operations to other countries and fortifies its positions in South Africa, we see big opportunities ahead for this Top 10 List newcomer.
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