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Russia will run out of gold in 20 years if new deposits not found, biggest gold miner warns

Russia will run out of gold in 20 years if new deposits not found, biggest gold miner warns
The chief executive of Russia’s largest gold producer Polyus, Pavel Grachev, has warned that the country’s gold deposits are being depleted, with mining firms expected to exhaust their resource portfolios in the next two decades.

According to Grachev, Russia’s gold deposits currently total about 8,000 tons, while annual production amounts to 330 tons.

“If the trend is not reversed, the industry may face a structural shortage of raw materials during the next decade or two,” the chief executive said, stressing that Polyus has 37 years of gold left in its deposits.

He highlighted that the nation’s perpetual gold resources, which represent the ratio of extracted resources to deposits included in the mining companies’ portfolios, have halved over the past several years – from 62% to 30%.

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Grachev called for increased private investment in geological prospecting and exploration to reverse the current trend of depletion.

Earlier this year, Polyus announced plans to ramp up production over the next two years amid the global recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The mining firm expected an insignificant decrease in 2021 due to an ore-grade decline at some of its Siberian mines, but expressed hope for output recovery in 2022 and 2023.

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