We have a strong track record in replacing our Ore Reserve and Mineral Resource and in securing our long-term optionality.
Key metrics and related targets 2021
|Metrics||Targets, aims and performance|
|Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve (12.5% of DSP performance award):|
|Remuneration metrics||Related remuneration targets:||Performance|
|Ore Reserve additions*||Additions of between 1.4Moz and 4.3Moz||2.7Moz added to the Ore Reserve predepletion|
|Mineral Resource additions*||Additions of between 3.8Moz and 11.3Moz||2.1Moz added to the Mineral Resource pre-depletion|
|Other metrics monitored
* Pre-depletion, asset sales, mergers and acquisitions
Ore Reserve and Mineral Resource
Exploration is the foundation of our business and with our balance sheet significantly stronger, and our portfolio significantly simpler, we can safely turn to reinvesting in our ore bodies.
We are in the midst of a multi-year initiative, begun in early 2020, to increase investment in Ore Reserve development and brownfield exploration, increase Ore Reserve conversion, extend Ore Reserve life, improve mining flexibility and upgrade knowledge of our orebodies. Two years into this initiative, strong progress has been made with a cumulative addition of 8.7Moz to our Ore Reserve, before depletion, at a cost of $68/oz. Our Ore Reserve inventory has grown by 23% over this period, providing the Mineral Resource base needed to leverage and further grow the Ore Reserve.
In 2021, AngloGold Ashanti added 2.7Moz to its Ore Reserve before depletion. At Geita, where extending mine life is a priority, the Ore Reserve grew by 0.8Moz, bringing to 2.2Moz the total Ore Reserve added there over the past two years. At Iduapriem, the Ore Reserve increased by 0.9Moz, at Kibali by 0.5Moz and at Sunrise Dam by 0.4Moz – all underpinned by an expansive exploration programme.
There were steady Ore Reserve gains totalling 0.5Moz across the rest of the portfolio.
On the greenfield front, we declared a maiden Mineral Resource of 3.4Moz at Silicon in Nevada, United States. Following the acquisition of Corvus in January 2022, further Mineral Resource will be added in 2022. Our aim is to use this acquisition as a foothold in the region to establish a meaningful, low-cost, long-life production base over the medium term. This regional consolidation has the potential for significant synergies, including economies of scale and integrated infrastructure relating to water rights, adjacent concessions and processing facilities.
Our conceptual development plan for the district envisions
- North Bullfrog deposit (previously owned by Corvus) – to be developed first with initial production expected within three years
- Silicon – a 3.4Moz Mineral Resource with growth potential
- Mother Lode deposit (previously owned by Corvus) – to be developed last
There is potential to supplement this schedule with various other prospective deposits now being explored across the tenement. These deposits will be developed in a modular fashion, mined initially as open pits with processing by means of heap leach and gravity recovery where applicable.
The expansion of the underground operations at Geita continued during the year with development of the newly established Geita Hill underground mine progressing. Ore Reserve access development is also being accelerated at Geita Hill underground after the delayed granting of the required approvals.
Mining operations continue at Nyamulilima open pit and, in the short term, production is planned to be lower compared to previous periods, and costs higher, as we focus on fortifying highgrade ore access at Geita in coming months.
Geita had another successful year in 2021 on the exploration front – adding 800,000oz before depletion with strong additions at Nyamulilima and Geita Hill East. This was the fourth consecutive year in which the Ore Reserve grew net of depletion with the Ore Reserve growing 112% from 1.25Moz in 2017 to 2.65Moz in 2021. Geita is currently on track to achieve our target of consistently having three to four years of Ore Reserve ahead at the right balance between development and ore extraction.
Brownfield exploration at Iduapriem contributed about 900,000oz to the mine’s Ore Reserve, pre-depletion.
At our Australia operations, the focus is on improving mining flexibility at Sunrise Dam where our reinvestment programme contributed ~700,000oz to the Mineral Resource and ~400,000oz to the Ore Reserve, pre-depletion, in 2021.
For more detailed information on our long-term optionality, Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve and greenfield and brownfield exploration, see Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve, Exploration and planning for the future and <RR>.