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North Mara: Mining With Integrity

North Mara / Mining With Integrity

North Mara: Mining with Integrity is maintained by Barrick to act as a resource and to provide information on our operations in Tanzania. Our goal is to share news, presentations and local updates regarding our operations and the work we are doing to help the local communities thrive.

35,000

Reliable clean and safe water provided to 35,000 community members with phase one of Water Provision Project complete.

46%

People from local communities make up 46% of all employees at North Mara.

$30 million

A new partnership with the Tanzania government has committed $30 million to expand education infrastructure in the country.

CEO Letter
A message from Mark Bristow

Through real partnerships with the local community and government, we are helping address the longstanding challenges the region faces while ensuring that Barrick’s presence is a positive force fostering a strong community, environment and economy.

North Mara is a gold mine located in the Tarime district of the Mara region in northern Tanzania.

It is owned and operated by North Mara Gold Mine Limited (NMGML), a Tanzanian company that has been majority-owned by Barrick since 2019.

Through its Twiga Minerals (Twiga) joint venture with Barrick, the Tanzanian government holds a 16% stake in North Mara and shares the economic benefits created by the mine and its sister operation Bulyanhulu on a 50:50 basis.

The North Mara Gold Mine is located in a remote area of Tanzania and close to the porous Kenyan Border. It is split across two sites—the Gokona underground mine and the Nyabirama open pit—that together neighbor 11 local villages. The region presents a complex operating environment with geographical, social, environmental and economic challenges that contribute to unique safety and security concerns affecting the community at large.

An aerial view of the village near the North Mara mine.
An aerial view of the North Mara gold mine

In September 2019, upon completion of its buyout of minority shareholders of Acacia Mining plc, Barrick took operational control of the North Mara Gold Mine in that it became the owner of NMGML.

At that time, it was clear there was significant work required to strengthen the relationship with the local communities surrounding the North Mara Gold Mine and to address complexities within the region.

Barrick has worked diligently to enhance and strengthen the relationship with the local community. A key focus has been to ensure the local community meaningfully benefits from Barrick’s presence.

In this regard, considerable efforts have been made to engage with the local community and to explain Barrick’s plans for the Mine and its commitment to local communities.

Importantly, a Community Development Committee (CDC) was established. The role of the CDC is to allocate a community investment budget to projects and initiatives identified and considered most critical by local stakeholders. The CDC is elected and made up of a diverse mix of local leaders and community members.

Barrick is a member of the CDC but only in an oversight and administrative capacity. We regularly engage with the 11 Village Chairpersons who represent the larger local community.

A group of school children in North Mara village.
A man and woman pick peppers in a field.

Since its establishment, Twiga has invested more than $12.5 million in landmark projects in Tanzania to provide access to quality healthcare, educational facilities, potable water and alternative sources of income.

Our investment commitment to local communities goes further, and includes a $30 million investment in education across the country and a $40 million investment in the development of a 73 km road from Kahama to Kakola.

We consider ourselves part of the communities in which we operate. Our vision is to become a local business run by local employees and serviced by local businesses.

NMGML has succeeded in becoming exactly that. As a result of NMGML’s local employment policy, North Mara has seen a 25% increase in local employment since September 2019.

The Mine now employs 2,923 people of whom:

  • 96% are host nationals (including 64% of management employees); and
  • 46% are from local communities

Barrick has spent almost $3 billion in in-country investments since 2019 in the form of taxes and royalties, dividends and loan repayments, salaries, procurement and socio-economic development. North Mara was recognized as the largest taxpayer in Tanzania in both 2021 and 2022.

The North Mara Gold Mine now has a total of 172 local and regional suppliers, representing a 200% increase from 58 suppliers in 2019. The Mine spent approximately $83 million on local goods and services in 2022, up from $50 million in 2021.

Three employees at the North Mara mine.
An employee at the North Mara mine.

Our work at and around the North Mara area remains unfinished and we acknowledge there are longstanding issues associated with the presence of mining in the area.

We continue to work with national NGOs to help communicate, socialize and improve the grievance mechanism in close partnership with the local community.

We are proud of the steps we have taken to engage with communities around North Mara, and we are committed to enhancing the Mine’s status as a world-class operation while being a trusted partner for the communities and the country.