File image: Reuters

Gold Fields (GFI) announced on Monday that attributable group production for the December 2012 quarter (Q4 2012) is expected to be 753‚000 gold equivalent ounces compared to 811‚000 ounces in the September quarter (Q3 2012) and 883‚000 ounces in the corresponding 2011 quarter (Q4 2011).

The miner said the international regions had had an excellent quarter contributing 471‚000 (Q3 2012 - 424‚000 and Q4 2011 - 449‚000) attributable gold equivalent ounces with all of the international operations achieving an improved performance quarter on quarter.

In particular‚ the Tarkwa Gold mine recorded a strong improvement from the prior quarter with production of 187‚800 ounces of gold (Q3 2012 - 169‚400 ounces).

The South Africa Region‚ as expected‚ contributed lower production of approximately 282‚000 ounces compared to 386‚000 ounces in Q3 2012.

The lower production was largely the result of approximately 110‚000 ounces lost during the quarter (Q3 2012 - 35‚000 ounces) due to the on-going impact of the prolonged and unprotected strikes at KDC and Beatrix. In total 145‚000 ounces are estimated to have been lost due to the strikes.

Unit costs in the South Africa Region were negatively impacted by the lower production.

This quarter is the last time that Gold Fields will be reporting on the KDC and Beatrix Gold Mines. These mines are part of GFIMSA‚ which has been renamed Sibanye Gold and will be listed separately on 11 February 2013.

Gold Fields will release full results for Q4 2012 on Thursday 14 February 2013. - I-Net Bridge