The world’s third-largest gold miner, AngloGold Ashanti, is entering a second phase of discussions with two prospective buyers of its mine in the United States of America. The sale will help AngloGold cushion the burden of a rising debt portfolio.

The potential buyers Newmont Mining Corp and Canada’s Kinross Gold Corp are currently locked in discussions over the acquisition process. However, the challenge lies in whether AngloGold will be willing to cede a stake, or sell the entire Cripple Creek & Victor (CC&V) mine.

With a debt portfolio of over $3 billion dangling over its head, AngloGold has decided to sell off some of its assets to lessen this burden. It has hinted that a $1 billion debt reduction scheme will be implemented this year, and a sale of its US mine could prove critical in achieving this target. The mine produced 211,000 ounces of bullion in 2014.

AngloGold has said that reducing its debt by selling some of its assets is an “objective to simplify and improve the overall quality of its portfolio”.

The miner also plans to sell off its stakes in two gold mines located in Mali to Canadian gold mining firm, Iamgold, as part of its attempt to reduce debt. Consequently, the company has also experienced historic under-performance and high cost structure at their Obuasi mine in Ghana. It would be recalled that they announced plans of placing the mine under care and maintenance early 2014.

By Ogo Idam

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