Barrick Gold in talks with partners in China and Saudi Arabia on copper assets

Barrick Gold in talks with partners in China and Saudi Arabia on copper assets
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TORONTO — Barrick Gold Corp. says it’s in talks with partners in China and Saudi Arabia on potential deals involving its copper assets as it looks ahead to its acquisition of Randgold Resources and an increased focus on African gold mines.

Company chairman John Thornton said on a conference call that its copper assets are of high interest to the partners who may want to build serious copper companies.

The ongoing talks on its copper assets come as the Nov. 5 shareholder vote on Barrick’s acquisition of Randgold Resources approaches.

Proxy advisory firms Glass Lewis and Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. both recommended this week that shareholders vote in favour of the deal.

The acquisition of Randgold would significantly increase Barrick’s gold focus on Africa, since the Toronto-based company spun out its Tanzania gold mines into Acacia Mining in 2010.

Kevin Thomson, Barrick’s senior executive vice president of strategic matters, declined to comment on the call about the potential future of its majority-owned Acacia Mining, which has been embroiled in an extended taxation and export dispute with the Tanzanian government.

The Canadian Press

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