The pit at Morila mine
– which is one of the
Mali assets that may
be sold
 
Cape Town, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 10 February 2009 – AngloGold Ashanti Limited – Africa’s  largest gold miner – has announced its most significant find in a decade in Colombia, and revealed that fourth-quarter production beat the company’s own forecasts.

“The company is very excited by its 12.3 million ounce gold resource in Colombia, CEO Mark Cutifani said here.

Bloomberg News reports that Cutifani has cut project spending, and may sell assets in Mali, in a bid to boost company finances amid the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression.

“We wouldn’t go beyond that at this stage,” he said. “AngloGold is well down the track on asset sales and is carefully looking for acquisition opportunities,” he said.

AngloGold Ashanti announced that its fourth-quarter production had risen to 1.27 million ounces, ahead of both the previous quarter and its own guidance. It added that full year output was forecast at between 4.9 and 5 million ounces.

Earlier, AngloGold confirmed that its fourth-quarter loss had widened after it took a US$1.25 billion (R12.5 billion) charge on former Ashanti Goldfields assets, which it bought in 2003.

The net loss widened to R11.9 billion for the three months ended 31 December 2008, compared with a loss of R247 million (almost R2.5 billion) in the previous quarter.

“AngloGold Ashanti has some great finds on their exploration books,”, Renaissance Specialist Fund Managers fund manager Andrew Joannou said here. “The year ahead will be a good. – the company’s hedge book has been reduced and costs are under control, he added.