* Mine to reach full capacity in 2013 2nd half
* Barrick’s share 500,000-650,000 ounces in 2013
* Goldcorp’s share 330,000-435,000 ounces in 2013
* Output to top 1 mln ounces/year over first five years
TORONTO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Barrick Gold Corp said on Tuesday it had achieved commercial production at its Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic, one of the biggest new gold projects in the world.
The mine, which represents the single largest foreign investment in the Caribbean nation’s history, is a joint venture between Barrick and Goldcorp Inc and cost $3.7 billion to build.
“This is another major milestone at this truly world-class mine,” Barrick Chief Executive Jamie Sokalsky said in a statement.
Barrick’s 60 percent share of 2013 output is expected to be 500,000 to 650,000 ounces, while Goldcorp’s 40 percent share is expected to be 330,000 to 435,000 ounces.
Over the first five years of full production, annual output is set to top 1 million ounces.
It took nearly four years to build the Pueblo Viejo mine, which is located some 100 kilometers northwest of Santo Domingo.
Commercial production, originally expected before the end of 2012, was delayed slightly by operational issues. A ramp-up to full capacity is expected in the second half of 2013.