Canadian miner B2Gold CEO Clive Johnson has dismissed reports about the company acquiring a gold mine in Zimbabwe, stating on Friday that the company was “not pursuing material developments or production mergers or acquisitions”.
He reiterated B2Gold’s long-term growth strategy. “In addition to developing our existing pipeline of projects, we continue our pursuit of significant exploration opportunities in a number of countries."
News agency Bloomberg on Friday morning quoted “people familiar with the situation,” who said that B2Gold was considering buying an idled Zimbabwean gold mine called Shimva.
The source told the media house that if a transaction with owner Metallon was concluded, B2Gold would invest between $150-million and $200-million to develop the mine.
Zimbabwe’s two biggest producers – Metallon and RioZim – are suing the central bank over its payment arrangements. By law, gold miners in the country must sell their gold to a unit of the central bank, which then pays them back partly in dollars and partly in local quasi-currency that cannot be traded outside of Zimbabwe.
Both companies was suing the bank over the currency they are remunerated in and over late payments.