According to the latest report by the World Gold Council, Serbia currently has 17 tonnes of gold bullions which is 5% of the country’s foreign currency reserves.
Serbia is the leading country in the region when it comes to the quantity of this precious metal deposited at the National Bank of Serbia’s treasury. Macedonia takes the second place with 6.8 tonnes, Slovenia is the next with 3.2 tonnes, followed by Bosnia and Herzegovina with 3 tonnes. Albania takes the last place with 1.6 tonnes, while Croatia and Montenegro are not among the top 100 countries.
All gold bullions deposited at the NBS treasury have been produced by only one company – the Mining and Smelting Basin Bor (RTB Bor) which annually produces around a ton of gold. In terms of the overall quantity of gold, Serbia is ranked 59th in the world.
The richest gold deposits in Serbia are in the eastern part of the country, namely in the region of Bor, Majdanpek, Zajecar, Negotin, Raska and Medvedja.
It is no secret that Serbian gold is appealing to many foreign companies, however there is no official data showing how many of them are exploring gold mines in Serbia at the moment. Some estimates have shown that there are currently 50 foreign companies researching gold deposits in Serbia, and that they invest between 10 and 100 million USD in geological surveys. In the last two years, companies like Freeport from the USA, Reservoir Minerals from Canada and the British-Australian company Rio Tinto have invested around 95 million dollars in geological surveys here.
The Lece mine in Medvedja is thought to be the biggest gold deposit in Europe. However, there had been three unsuccessful attempts to sell this mine so far. Although the initial price of 509.5 million dinars was reduced to 285 million dinars, no buyers came forward. Despite the unsuccessful attempts to sell it, the mine was leased out to a Dubai-based company Lifestone Capital that, last year alone, extracted 50-million-EUR worth of gold from it.
(Vesti Online, 19.03.2017)
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