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Copper and Uranium mine in S. Africa

Message: Barrick gets Australian clearance for Equinox takeover



TORONTO - Barrick Gold Corp. says the Australian government won't oppose Barrick's planned $7.3-billion acquisition of Equinox Minerals Ltd. a Canadian-Australian copper miner with operations in Africa.

Barrick said Tuesday the government has no objections under its foreign investment rules to the Canadian gold giant's purchase of Equinox, which is listed on the Toronto and Australian stock exchanges.

Barrick announced the friendly deal last month as the world's biggest gold miner decided to get more heavily into the copper business to cash in on growing demand for the industrial metal widely used in housing and industry.

The purchase of Equinox would double Barrick's annual copper production.

Currently, Barrick makes 90 per cent of its money from gold, and 10 per cent from copper. The Equinox acquisition would increase the copper contribution to 18 per cent.

Equinox's flagship asset is the Lumwana copper mine in Zambia, one of the largest new copper mines to be developed globally over the last few years. It is also developing another copper mine in the Middle East.

Barrick owns and operates gold mines in Canada, the U.S., Peru, Argentina, Chile, Australia and Papua New Guinea and employs about 20,000 people around the world.

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