Australia's Gold Output May Fall to Lowest Level Since '89

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Australia's gold production increased by 3% to 56 tons in the September quarter, compared with the previous three-month period, although this was still the third-lowest quarterly output recorded by the country in the past 20 years, mining consultant Surbiton Associates reported on Monday.

Australia's gold production increased by 3% to 56 tons in the September quarter, compared with the previous three-month period, although this was still the third-lowest quarterly output recorded by the country in the past 20 years, mining consultant Surbiton Associates reported on Monday.

The consultant on Monday released its latest Gold Quarterly Review, indicating that gold production was down 9% year-on-year.

"It looks as though Australia's gold production for the full 2008 year will be the lowest since 1989. It will be somewhere between 25% and 30% lower than the peak year of 1997," said Surbiton Associates director Dr Sandra Close.

However, despite the lower output, the value of the gold produced had increased, said Surbiton, with the Australian dollar gold price recently achieving record levels.

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