Centamin, operator of Egypt’s only commercial gold mine, is targeting to pay some $137 million to the Egyptian Mineral Resource Authority (EMRA) in 2018, Chairman of mineral exploration and mining company Centamin Egypt Youssef el-Raghy said Sunday.
He said that the EMRA’s profits from Sukari gold mine are expected to reach some $115 million in 2018, while the fixed royalty paid twice a year to EMRA is worth $22 million.
In accordance with the terms of the Concession Agreement, EMRA is entitled to a share of 50 percent of SGM’s net production surplus. Raghy expected EMRO’s profits to increase if gold prices surpassed the current average of $1,250 per ounce.
The Ministry of Petroleum-affiliated EMRA has obtained $260 million from the mine since the company started dividing profits with the government in October 2016, Raghy said.
He added that the company targets producing between 550,000-560,000 ounces of gold in 2018, up from 540,000 in 2017. Sukari mine, the country’s sole gold-exporting mine, produced around 100 tons of gold since it started operations in January 2010, Raghy said, stating that the average monthly production is spanning between 1.2-1.5 tons of gold.
Exports from the mine represent two percent of Egyptian exports, according to Centamin’s data.
Petroleum Minister Tarek el-Molla said in late December that the Sukari gold mine has contributed a total of $250 million in revenues to the government since it started production in 2009.
The government has said that it aims to increase the mining sector’s contribution to the GDP to more than five percent. It currently contributes around 0.5 percent of the GDP.
Molla said that the government is working to identify the challenges facing the sector and that his ministry aims to boost investments by amending the sector’s administrative and legislative system.
Located in the south-easternmost region of the Eastern Desert, Sukari mine is the first large-scale modern gold mine in Egypt, with a base case production rate of about 500,000 ounces per annum, according to the official website of Centamin. Source: Egypt today