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Cost competitive analysis of large-scale gold mines in Ghana from 2007 to 2016


  • Samuel Kwame Atta

    (University of the Witwatersrand
    Ghana Geological Survey Authority)

  • Tinashe Tholana

    (University of the Witwatersrand)


The gold mining industry is a major contributor to the economy of Ghana. However, this contribution has been declining over the past decade. This decline coupled with the importance of the industry to the country’s economy necessitated the need to analyse the performance of companies within the industry. Therefore, a cost performance analysis of Ghana’s major gold mines was done in this paper for the period 2007 to 2016 using industry cost curves. A correlation coefficient analysis was also done to identify the key cost drivers in Ghana. This paper further analysed the cost competitiveness of Ghana’s gold mining industry against other gold producing countries in the world. From the analysis, it was found that Newmont’s Ahafo and Akyem mines were consistent low unit cost producers. Both mines benefited from economies of scale and high metallurgical recovery rates. On the other hand, AngloGold Ashanti’s Obuasi and Golden Star’s Bogoso mines were found to be consistent high unit cost producers due to low-productive and labour-intensive underground mining methods used and very low metallurgical recovery rates, respectively. Finally, the study revealed that Ghana’s gold mining industry was not cost competitive when compared to other gold-producing countries over the analysis period.

Suggested Citation

  • Samuel Kwame Atta & Tinashe Tholana, 2022. "Cost competitive analysis of large-scale gold mines in Ghana from 2007 to 2016," Mineral Economics, Springer;Raw Materials Group (RMG);Luleå University of Technology, vol. 35(1), pages 53-65, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:minecn:v:35:y:2022:i:1:d:10.1007_s13563-021-00256-5
    DOI: 10.1007/s13563-021-00256-5

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    References listed on IDEAS

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