Newmont has stressed the importance of COVID-19 vaccinations after the company’s Tanami gold mine in the Northern Territory was placed under care and maintenance due to an outbreak at the site in late June.
Despite the Tanami setback, Newmont reported increased gold production during the June quarter thanks in part to higher grades and throughput at the Boddington mine in Western Australia.
Newmont president and chief executive officer Tom Palmer said the global pandemic will continue to provide a challenge for the company for some time.
“Our commitment to protect the health and safety of our workforce and host communities remains our top priority,” he said.
“We believe that the COVID-19 vaccine is critical in combating the spread of the virus. We are encouraging our workforce to get vaccinated as soon as they become eligible and we are working with our local communities and host governments to improve availability and deployment at all of our managed operations.
“These efforts are supported by our Global Community Support Fund, which is seeking to help with vaccine rollout, vaccine education, and awareness campaigns.”
Palmer said until the vaccine is available to everyone around the world, Newmont’s people and operations will continue to be affected by COVID-19.
“Recent outbreaks have shown just how difficult this pandemic continues to be, testing our protocols and the resilience of our people and systems,” he said.
“As we look ahead, toward the second half of this year, we will remain diligent in supporting the vaccination efforts that is so urgently needed around the world.
“And we encourage everyone to get their vaccine as soon as they’re eligible, ensuring that we are all doing our part to end this global pandemic.”
Palmer said the impacts of the pandemic are also driving cost inflation around the globe.
“We are now expecting cost escalation of around 3 per cent to 5 per cent for materials, energy, and labor,” he said.
“We expect these pressures to continue through until at least at the end of next year.
“However, despite the impacts from COVID, we remain in line with our guidance ranges.”