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Federal Court Rules for BLM, Barrick in Cortez Hills Case

January 26, 2009

RENO, NV – A U.S. District Judge today declined to grant an injunction regarding the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) recent approval of Barrick’s Cortez Hills Project in Lander County, Nevada. District Judge Larry Hicks’ ruling followed four days of testimony and oral argument after two activist groups and two Native American tribes, one in California and one in Nevada, sought to stop the project, with an initial capital budget of about $500 million.

"This is very good news for rural Nevada and for everyone who has supported us in this dispute," said Greg Lang, President of Barrick Gold of North America. "We respect anyone’s right to oppose our activities but, in this case, the judge’s ruling makes it clear that we can continue with the project’s construction."

Cortez Hills is an expansion of Barrick’s Cortez Mine, which has produced gold continuously since the late 1960s. Altogether, the existing Pipeline surface mine and the Cortez Hills Project support about 800 families in Elko, Eureka and Lander counties, including many Western Shoshone. The company expects to add another 100 employees at the site in 2009.

Barrick’s plans for the development of Cortez Hills came after several years of work and careful study. The BLM issued a Record of Decision approving the project in early November. A Colorado-based attorney for the Western Shoshone Defense Project, Great Basin Resource Watch, the Timbisha Tribe (California) and the Te-Moak Western Shoshone Tribe filed with the court to stop the implementation of the BLM’s decision.

The Cortez Hills Project includes both surface and underground mining operations in an area where dozens of smaller mines have produced a variety of metals since the 1870s. This new expansion is expected to increase gold production at Cortez to an average of 1 million ounces annually in the first full five years. Cortez is the largest mining operation in Lander County and has provided essential tax revenue and jobs to several rural communities since the late 1960s.

"As we watch the continuing economic turmoil in urban Nevada and elsewhere, we are fortunate to be able to provide hundreds of good jobs and the many other benefits this project brings to rural Nevada," Lang said. "In particular, we look forward to continuing to work with the Western Shoshone communities to ensure that the project is beneficial to their interests."

Barrick’s vision is to be the world’s best gold company by finding, acquiring, developing and producing quality reserves in a safe, profitable and socially responsible manner.

MEDIA CONTACTS: 

Louis A. Schack
Manager,
Communications and Community Affairs
Tel: (775) 748-1112
Email: lschack@barrick.com

Vincent Borg
Executive Vice President,
Corporate Communications
Tel: (416) 307-7477
Email: vborg@barrick.com

INVESTOR CONTACT:

Deni Nicoski
Vice President,
Investor Relations
Tel: (416) 307-7410
Email: dnicoski@barrick.com

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT ON FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

Certain information contained in this Press Release, including any information as to our strategy, plans or future financial or operating performance and other statements that express management's expectations or estimates of future performance, constitute "forward-looking statements". All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by management, are inherently subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties and contingencies. The Company cautions the reader that such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Barrick to be materially different from the Company's estimated future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by those forward-looking statements and the forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance. These risks, uncertainties and other factors include, but are not limited to: changes in the worldwide price of gold or certain other commodities (such as fuel and electricity); fluctuations in currency markets; legislative, political or economic developments in the United States; operating or technical difficulties in connection with mining or development activities; employee relations; availability and increasing costs associated with mining inputs and labor; the speculative nature of exploration and development, including the risks of obtaining necessary licenses and permits and diminishing quantities or grades of reserves. Certain of these factors are discussed in greater detail in the Company’s most recent Form 40-F/Annual Information Form on file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities.

The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.

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