BARRICK Gold added Egypt to the African countries in which it has an exploration interest, confirming on Tuesday it had been awarded four exploration blocks.
The award was in terms of the international bid round led by the Egyptian government for exploration of gold and associated minerals in the Eastern Desert region, described by Barrick as “highly prospective”.
The Sukari deposit operated by Centamin is located in the Eastern Desert. There are also numerous other gold occurrences, but which has seen no recent systematic exploration, said Barrick Gold.
“The move into Egypt is an integral part of Barrick’s exploration strategy,” said Joel Holliday, senior vice president of Barrick Gold. The company would evaluate properties anywhere there was potential for world class gold deposits, he said.
“We believe that it is essential to move into prospective emerging and underexplored mineral belts to maintain the discovery rate as part of a balanced development strategy,” said Holliday.
In 2021, Barrick expanded its exploration portfolio with the addition of other prospective new property positions in Tanzania, Guyana, Japan, and Nevada.
“The opportunity in Egypt is an exciting addition to our portfolio and we look forward to a long and successful partnership with the Egyptian government,” said Barrick president and CEO Mark Bristow.
In March 2020, the Egyptian government put 56,000km2 of exploration concessions under the hammer as part of an effort to modernise its resources sector.