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Gold Slips Back After Fiscal Cliff Euphoria

Gold mine supply to increase

Kitco News reported that gold-mine supply is set to increase in 2013, with a number of large-scale start ups likely, according to analysts. The precious metals news outlet quoted one analyst saying that gold-mine supply could increase 4.3 percent, from 80.5 million to 83.9 million ounces this year. New projects adding to supply include Rio Tinto's (LSE:RIO,NYSE:RIO,ASX:RIO) Oyu Tologi's copper-gold complex in Mongolia, Detour Gold's (TSX:DGC) Detour Lake project in Ontario, Canada, and the Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic — a joint venture between Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX,TSX:ABX) and Goldcorp (TSX:G,NYSE:GG).

Colombia eyes "green gold"

Colombia — whose renaissance as a gold-mining nation has come at the expense of having a high number of illegal miners — this week showed progress by encouraging small-scale, "artisinal" miners to extract gold using techniques other than mercury, which is harmful to human health and the environment. The World reported that a movement called Oro Verde (Green Gold) is becoming popular in the Northern Colombian department of Choco. Miners who produce gold using natural methods, such as balsa tree leaves instead of chemicals, receive a 15-percent premium over the international price from from an organization called Fairtrade and Fairminded Gold.

Company news

Egyptian gold producer Centamin (TSX:CEE,LSE:CEY) had its gold exports suspended by the country's customs authority Wednesday due to claims that the company has yet to receive approval from the petroleum ministry. It's the second time in two months that Centamin has had its exports suspended. It was forced to halt production in October and December due to a dispute with the Egyptian government over diesel fuel supply and gold exports.

South African bullion producer Harmony Gold (NYSE:HMY) said Wednesday that it will keep its Kusasalethu gold mine shut down while it reviews the operation. Kusasalethu stopped producing in December after violence at the mine erupted following the suspension of 578 workers, who were participating in an illegal strike. According to Harmony, the company has lost 25,000 ounces due to the stoppage, reported Fox Business News.

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