In an example of the new political risks Toronto-based Barrick Gold Corp. would face under its proposed merger with Africa-focused Randgold Resources Ltd., on Friday, a state-owned miner in the Democratic Republic of Congo took issue with the combination.
The proposed US$6 billion merger, announced Monday, would convert London-listed Randgold shares into Barrick stock and create the world’s largest gold miner. Randgold’s chief executive Mark Bristow would retain his role and title at the new company, which would continue to be called Barrick Gold.
In a statement translated from French, the DRC-state owned miner, Sokimo SA, which shares ownership of Randgold’s Kibali mine, said the deal would introduce a new partner to the mine, and yet it only learned about the deal from press reports.
Sokimo characterized the merger as another example of foreign companies “impos(ing) themselves, without any prior discussion, in the countries from which are extracted the resources that make their wealth.”
Sokimo owns 10 per cent of the Kibali mine, while Randgold and Johannesburg-based AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. each control a 45 per cent stake. In 2017, Randgold said the Kibali mine produced roughly US$287 million in profits for its owners, from roughly 600,000 ounces of gold production, worth an estimated US$754 million.
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