Barrick Gold Corporation reported gold production for its second quarter had climbed 6 per cent as the company projects a big second half.

The Canadian firm reported more than one million ounces of gold for the quarter, as its mines in Nevada and the Democratic Republic of Congo had improved performances.

Barrick Gold president and CEO Mark Bristow projects the company to report further growth in the second half of 2023, as two scheduled maintenance projects and a third unscheduled one in Nevada are now completed.

“We had scheduled maintenance on both our roasters,” he told BNN Bloomberg. “At the same time, we had unplanned downtime on one of the autoclaves in Turquoise ridge, which we were scheduled to do in quarter three, so a lot of maintenance happened in the first half and we’ve got a free run in the second half, which is good.”

Overall, net earnings more than doubled compared to the previous quarter, as the price of gold climbed to $1,972 per ounce.

Barrick is also expecting a big second half as it completes expansion of the Pueblo Viejo gold mine in the Dominican Republic.

“We’re confident we’ll have everything up and running at full run rate by the end of this quarter,” Bristow said.

The reports did not include projections for the Porgera mine in Papua New Guinea, which halted operations due to a dispute with the country’s government.

Bristow now says that an agreement has been reached and Barrick has already “started to ready” the area with the goal of resolving the final regulatory issues sometime this year.

“We’ve been working to restart that with a new structure that we’ve reached with the government of Papua New Guinea and we’re in that phase now,” he said.

 “We’re pretty sure we’ll have it producing gold this year.”