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2011 Top 10 Gold Producing Countries

2011 Top 10 Gold Producing Countries This article is an update of a June 2012 article. Updated information includes central bank reserves for each country. 

Gold's admirers are diverse, and so are the locations where it is mined. The metal is produced in more than 90 countries, but some nations earn recognition for being top producers. In 2011, over 1,800 tons of gold were mined in 10 countries. These top producing nations, which span four continents, including both emerging and developed nations, are listed below.

China

Mine production: 355 tons

China can be called the nation of gold. It is not only the top consumer of the the yellow metal, but also the top producer of gold, a crown it swiped from South Africa in 2007. China hardly appears at risk of being dethroned from that number one spot. Its gold production exceeded 300 tons in 2011. Through August 2012, national production was reported at 249.7 tons, a year-on-year increase of over 10 percent.

China National Gold Group claims to be the country's largest producer, crediting itself with 20 percent of China's gold output. According to the US Geological Survey (USGS), China has 1,900 tons of gold reserves. Shandong is the leading province for gold production and within its boundaries Zhaoyuan, which reportedly produced over 28 tons of gold in 2011, is the top gold-producing city.

China's official gold holdings are 1,054.1 tons or 1.7 percent of total foreign reserves.

Australia

Mine production: 270 tons

Australia's gold production rose in 2011 from the 261 tons reported in 2010. Though gold can be found across the nation, about two-thirds of its gold production comes from the state of Western Australia. That is where the world-class Super Pit at Kalgoorlie is located. Consisting of numerous mining operations, and once called the Golden Mile, this landmark site was converted into Australia's largest open-pit mine and is owned by Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM,TSX:NMC) and Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX,TSX:ABX).

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