Barrick Gold Corp., - President and CEO, Mark Bristow
President and CEO, Mark Bristow
Source: Breakingviews
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  • Barrick Gold (TSX:ABX) has implemented procedures across its operations to limit the impact of COVID-19
  • The company is actively screening employees and visitors to its copper and gold mine sites
  • Barrick is educating employees on COVID-19’s symptoms and ways to mitigate the disease’s spread
  • The company stated that the outbreak has not affected its operations
  • Barrick Gold (ABX) is up 0.21 per cent, with shares trading for C$28.49 at 10:25am

Barrick Gold (TSX:ABX) is taking steps to limit the impact of COVID-19 on its operations.

The gold mining giant currently operates gold and copper mines in 15 countries across the Americas and Africa, as well as in Papua New Guinea and Saudi Arabia.

The two latter countries haven’t reported significant case numbers as of yet. While the Americas and Africa have confirmed cases, they are currently much lower than those in Italy, Japan, Iran, China, and Korea.

The majority of new cases are still arising in these five countries, none of which Barrick actively operates in. However, the company did recently sign an exploration agreement with Japan Gold.

The U.S. Centre for Disease Control recently upgraded Japan to a watch level two (out of three). If confirmed cases continue to rise, this could affect Barrick’s joint exploration operations.

The company stated that it has taken steps to counsel all employees across its operations on the disease’s symptoms and risks, as well as ways to mitigate its spread. Barrick Gold has not yet implemented travel bans.

Barrick is also actively screening visitors and employees to its operations. On-site medical facilities have opened in places across its operations. Many of these procedures were developed during the West African Ebola Epidemic, which impacted its mining operations in the mid-2010’s.

The company was quick to point out that thus far, the virus has not affected supplies to its operations.

Barring a steep intraday dip, which was quickly corrected, the gold spot-price had been performing very well during the crisis, as investors seek out safe havens.

With gold one of the few commodities not adversely affected by the outbreak, Barrick is eager to keep production high.

If this outbreak does affect the company at all, it will hit them through sick leave, operational disruptions, and border closures.

Barrick Gold (ABX) is up 0.21 per cent, with shares trading for C$28.49 at 10:25am EST.

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