ANGLOGOLD Ashanti, the third-largest gold producer, expects the biggest mining houses to put more assets on the block as they seek to bolster margins ahead of a forecast slump in bullion prices. The largest companies have shed $912 million (R9.7 billion) of unwanted mines in the past 12 months after gold last year fell the most in more than three decades. “Portfolio rationalisation will continue to happen,” AngloGold’s executive vice-president for planning and technical, Graham Ehm, said on Friday. “Those operations that don’t really give you much margin at those prices, really don’t belong in your portfolio, so you will see that continue.” Operations remained under review for potential sales or spin-offs with the metal seen more likely to decline than to advance beyond $1 400 an ounce, Ehm said. Barrick Gold had trimmed its operations to 19 from 27 last year, as it shuttered and sold assets that would not “contribute any meaningful free cash flow at current prices in the foreseeable future”, outgoing chief executive Jamie Soklasky said last week. With operations across 10 countries, AngloGold might consider potential sales of assets, including Obuasi in Ghana, Sadiola in Mali or Colombia’s La Colosa, said David Davis, an analyst at Standard Bank. – Bloomberg