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Exploring Serbia’s golden potential: Mining companies seek riches in copper deposits

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Mining companies are actively exploring Serbia’s gold potential, aiming to tap into the vast reserves hidden beneath its surface. According to data from the World Gold Council, approximately 210,000 tons of gold have been mined globally, with only a quarter remaining underground. Serbian mines are estimated to hold around 700 tons of this precious metal, making them an attractive prospect for companies worldwide.

The Ministry of Mining and Energy reports that 31 companies are currently conducting geological research for gold and related metals across Serbia, nearly double the number from a year ago. Gold is often found alongside copper, and three companies are involved in the extraction of this ore, which yields gold among other metals.

Professor Dr. Rade Jelenković from the Faculty of Mining and Geology in Belgrade highlights Serbia’s gold reserves comparable to neighboring countries like Bulgaria and Romania. Estimates suggest Serbia holds between 625 to over 750 tons of gold mineral resources, with significant amounts found in copper deposits in eastern Serbia, including the major Majdanpek and Bor mines, as well as the recently discovered Čukaru Peki deposit.

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However, while Serbia boasts substantial gold mineral resources, the actual ore reserves available for exploitation are estimated at around 215 tons. Annual gold production from Serbian copper deposits ranges from 1.2 to 2 tons, down from previous years when it reached up to five tons annually.

In comparison, other countries like Turkey, Bulgaria, Finland, and Sweden have larger gold reserves and higher production volumes. For instance, Turkey produced about 38 tons of gold in 2020, while Bulgaria produced 10 tons, Finland 13.5 tons, and Sweden 8.1 tons.

Globally, China leads in gold production, churning out approximately 330 tons annually, followed closely by Australia and Russia, each producing around 320 tons per year. Canada and the United States also contribute significantly to global gold production.

Despite these vast quantities, gold serves various purposes beyond just jewelry and investment. Central banks store around 36,000 tons of gold, while another 30,000 tons are used in industries such as medicine and technology.

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