Barrick Gold Corporation completed the sale of a 50 percent interest in the Veladero mine in San Juan province to Shandong Gold Mining Co., Ltd, for $960 million. The formation of a 50/50 joint venture at Veladero is the first of three steps outlined in a strategic cooperation agreement signed by Barrick and Shandong Gold Group Co., Ltd. on April 6.
In keeping with the second step in the agreement, the two companies have also formed a working group to explore the joint development of the Pascua-Lama deposit. As a third step, Barrick and Shandong will evaluate additional investment opportunities on the highly prospective El Indio Gold Belt on the border of Argentina and Chile.
Barrick Gold announced that proceeds from the sale of 50 percent of Veladero will be used primarily to reduce debt.
Headquartered in Jinan, Shandong province, China, Shandong Gold Group was founded in 1996 and today has 23,000 employees. Shandong Gold Mining Co., Ltd. was listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 2003. Shandong Gold Group produced approximately 1.2 million ounces of gold in 2016, and is the only mining company in China to be named a «National Environmentally Friendly Enterprise» by the Chinese government.