Gold miner Newmont has opted to put an investment decision on hold for its Yanacocha sulphides project in Peru, part of its planned expansion of the mine to extend its lifespan beyond 2040.
The company said it will now make its full-funds decision on the project during the second half of 2024, citing the market as well as “the continued war in Ukraine, record inflation rates, the rising prices for commodities and raw materials, prolonged supply chain disruptions and competitive labor markets” for its move.
Newmont said it will continue to manage the Yanacocha operations while simultaneously finding opportunities to enhance operations, including the construction of two water treatment plants. In all, it anticipates an initial spend of about $350 million over the next two years for the asset.
It is setting that into greater motion with the appointment of Dean Gehring as chief development officer – Peru to lead Yanacocha’s operations and the sulphides project.
A 30-year mining industry veteran, Gehring previously managed operations and projects in the United States, Canada, Indonesia, Suriname and Peru, including as the head of Newmont’s South America region. Most recently, he served as Newmont’s executive vice president and chief technology officer.
“Newmont has a long history of operating in Peru, and Yanacocha is an important part of Newmont’s world-class portfolio and long-term strategy,” President and CEO Tom Palmer said.
“Dean is uniquely qualified to ensure operational excellence while working closely with government stakeholders, business partners and local communities to manage the development of this project in the current global economic context.”
Yanacocha, located in the province and department of Cajamarca northeast of Lima, is South America’s largest gold mine. It is a joint venture between Newmont (51.35%), Minas Buenaventura (43.65%) and Sumitomo (5%). In production since 1993, the surface mine produces about 270,000 ounces annually.