QUETTA: Barrick Gold Corporation (BGC) will provide US $150,000 to Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) of Balochistan to support its relief and rehabilitation efforts in the wake of unprecedented rains and floods in the province.

People living in far-flung areas of the province were the hardest hit by the heavy monsoon rains and flash floods which left more than 500 people dead in the country.

In a telephone call with Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo on Friday, Barrick President and Chief Executive Mark Bristow expressed the company’s condolences on the loss of lives and suffering inflicted on the people of Balochistan.

He said the contribution to the emergency fund was a demonstration of the spirit of partnership in which Barrick, Balochistan and Pakistan had embarked on the reconstitution and restart of the Reko Diq project, which holds one of the world’s largest undeveloped copper-gold deposits.

Balochistan will have a 25 per cent fully funded share in the project (10pc free carried and 15pc to be funded by the federal government). Pakistan’s state-owned enterprises will hold another 25pc and Barrick, with 50pc, will operate the mine.

“Balochistan will benefit enormously from its stake in the mine. Even before construction starts, once the legalization process has been completed and the project reconstituted, we will start implementing social development programmes representing an estimated investment of $70 million over the construction period. In addition, Reko Diq will advance royalties of up to $5 million in the first year, up to $7.5 million in the second and up to $10m thereafter until construction starts,” Bristow said.

Published in Dawn, August 13th, 2022

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