AusBN – Mid-tier miner Evolution Mining (ASX: CAH) is set to become Australia’s second-largest gold producer with the purchase of Barrick Gold’s (TSX, NYSE: ABX) Cowal gold mine.
The world’s number one gold miner sold its New South Wales-based mine for US$550 million as part of an effort to cut its $13 billion debt by $3 billion before the end of the year.
Barrick has now sold six mines since 2012, five of which were in Australia, and holds only one remaining gold asset in the country: a 50% stake in the Kalgoorlie Super Pit.
The Canadian miner is also looking to sell its Porgera mine in Papua New Guinea and a stake in the Zaldivar copper mine in Chile, among other assets.
In a statement, Barrick co-president Kevin Dushnisky said: “The sale of Cowal is consistent with the strategy we have outlined to create long-term value for our owners, making a significant contribution to our debt reduction target while further focusing the geographic footprint of our portfolio.”
Once the transaction completes by October, Evolution’s production rate will overtake that of Australia’s current second-largest gold producer, Northern Star Resources (ASX: NST).