Gold exploration trends: drilling up, Canada leads – September 2019 – by Vladimir Basov ( – December 11, 2019)

Mining Intelligence data indicates that after a bleak month of August, exploration activity in the gold sector jumped in September and hit the second highest bar since the beginning of 2019, and both the number of drilled projects and the number of drillholes reported in September, were up in all major regions.

A trend towards exploration of advanced projects, rather than greenfield opportunities, was reversed in September with companies willing to take more early-stage exploration risks.

There was a noticeable improvement in overall drill intersection grades, with reported gold intersections with grades greater than 2 g/t have risen from 23% of their total count in August to 40% in September 2019.

Seven out of top ten highest-grade gold intersects reported in September 2019, were located in Canada.


In September 2019, companies reported exploration results for 169 projects (Figure 1), which is the second highest count observed since the beginning of 2019. Canada overtook Australia and was the leading country in terms of a number of reported drilled projects (58), followed by Australia (50) and South America (21). Number of reported drilled projects was up in all major regions except Africa where it fell by 14%.

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