LONDON (Scrap Monster): Barrick Gold Corp. officials, in a late-Wednesday Webcast in conjunction with an earnings report, gave upbeat assessments of the gold and copper markets. Barrick is the world’s largest gold producer and also mines copper.
“We think the fundamentals for gold and copper are strong,” says Aaron Regent, president and chief executive officer.
Chief Financial Officer Jamie Sokalsky says global financial challenges such as eurozone debt issues will keep pressuring reserve currencies, preserving gold’s appeal as an alternative.
“There are also some very supportive industry-specific trends at work which will complement this.” Further, the reported 455 metric tons of central-bank gold purchases last year were almost six times the level of 2010, and buying continued last month from nations such as Russia, Mexico and Turkey, he says.
High inflation in India and China is also prompting gold demand, Sokalsky adds. As for copper: “GDP growth rates and the industrialization of emerging economies continue to bode very well for increased demand. Our expectation is that mine supply for copper is expected to be constrained over the longer term as the industry continues to be challenged to provide a supply response to the expected increase in demand.”
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