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Gold mining contributes $53bn to local economies

Northern Star

A World Gold Council (WGC) report has showcased the economic importance of gold mining to countries and communities across the globe.

Based on data from 31 member companies, The Social and Economic Contribution of Gold Mining shows that gold mining contributed $US37.9 billion ($53.3 billion) to the gross domestic product (GDP) of the countries where these miners operate.

This represents 63 per cent of the total revenue from the member companies’ gold production ($US60.1 billion in total), which equates to approximately $US1100 in locally-added value per ounce.

WGC member companies directly paid $8.7 billion in employee wages and $7.6 billion in taxes in 38 countries in 2020.

$US26.2 billion was paid by member companies to procurement within these countries, amounting to an estimated $US21.6 billion to local suppliers.

For each of the 195,000 workers directly employed by WGC member companies, nearly six additional jobs are created through on-site contractors or local supply chains. Total direct and indirect employment amounts to almost 1.4 million jobs.

Other findings from The Social and Economic Contribution of Gold Mining highlight how lucrative a job in the gold mining industry is.

The average wage levels of WGC member company employees are more than six times the average national wage. The three highest average gold mining salaries were found in the United States, Australia and Canada.

WGC member companies boast a female representation of 17.3 per cent, above the 5-10 per cent average in the mining industry overall.

Women make up 24.6 per cent of board positions at WGC member companies and 17.6 per cent of executive positions.

Newcrest Mining chief executive officer and chair of the WGC environmental, social and governance (ESG) taskforce Sandeep Biswas said the gold mining industry makes a concerted effort to ensure it operates responsibly.

“Responsible gold mining companies boost local economies by creating well paid local jobs, making significant tax payments and creating valuable long-life infrastructure,” he said.

“Investments made by the gold sector will continue to deliver long-term benefits to local communities, extending to well after mine life ends.”

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