Gold for development

Gold mining is a major economic driver for many countries across the world. Well-managed, transparent and accountable resource extraction can be a major contributor to economic growth due to the creation of employment and business opportunities for local people. As well as direct and indirect jobs and employment, gold mining also brings foreign direct investment, foreign exchange and tax revenues to countries.

Often operating in remote locations, gold mining companies invest in infrastructure and utilities. In addition to supporting the needs of a gold mine, these improvements to roads, water and electricity supplies are a long-term benefit to businesses and communities across the area, that outlives the production years of a gold mine.

Responsible gold-mining companies also have ethical and commercial incentives to improve the health and education of the communities that they operate in. Many invest in social infrastructure, including schools, colleges and health centres that improve the opportunities and wellbeing of local people. 

Healthcare

The World Gold Council’s Members operate in many of the world’s lowest-income countries, which often lack developed health care services, and face the enormous task of dealing with poor nutrition and communicable diseases, including HIV, tuberculosis and malaria. As well as the human cost of these epidemics, there is also a considerable economic one. Responsible mining companies see shared value in helping host countries to tackle public health challenges and improve the quality of life for their employees and host communities through corporate social responsibility programmes and occupational health initiatives.

Infrastructure

In much of the developing world, a lack of access to power, clean water and transport infrastructure is a significant barrier to economic development. Gold mining often takes place in remote areas where there is little existing infrastructure, so companies invest heavily in building power supplies, piped water and roads, which can create important benefits for local communities. Infrastructure, from roads to power stations, is part of the legacy that responsible miners leave beyond the life of their mines, and is a major component of their beneficial impact on developing and middle income economies.

Community development

Responsible gold mining companies acknowledge that they can have a wider impact on the societies they operate in, beyond the jobs and investment that they bring to communities. Community development programmes are designed to meet local needs and priorities, and include investment in sectors including education, entrepreneurship and healthcare. Companies often work with community-based organisations or non-government organisations to plan and implement these programmes.

Local supply chains

One of the most effective ways to support socio-economic development in the countries where gold mining takes place is to provide business opportunities for local companies. Gold mining companies build local supply chains wherever possible, thereby encouraging entrepreneurship and helping existing businesses grow.

Mining case studies

Canada mining