Harmony to diversify in SE Asia, Africa for sustainable ops

Business, Main Stories

The National – Wednesday, February 9, 2011

HARMONY Gold, the operator of Hidden Valley Gold Mine in Morobe, is focused on further diversifying its operations in Southeast Asia and Africa, a move it says should help the company become more sustainable and lessen political and economic risks, its chief executive says.
Speaking to Dow Jones Newswires following the release of the company’s second-quarter results, in which the miner reported a fall in revenue but increase in net profit, Graham Briggs said geographical diversity would be key to the company’s future strategy.
He indicated the firm was looking for new opportunities in countries such as PNG, Indonesia and the Philippines, as well as new African frontiers.
“But  there are  specific deals are on the table at the moment,” Briggs said.
He said while a move into new countries had been debated within the group for some time, in the past the company “hadn’t always been able to” pursue potential new operations.
“Our strategy now is really about creating a sustainable company, and we are now focusing a lot more on geographic diversity.
“We like Southeast Asia – we know how to operate there, and we know the geology in that region,” Briggs said.
The third-largest of South Africa’s gold producers already has  its Hidden Valley a joint venture with Newcrest Mining, as well as exploration activities, particularly at Wafi-Golpu.
Briggs said he would continue to look, though, for new projects “both inside and outside the JV”.