Skip to content →

Top 10 Gold Producing Countries

Last updated on 15 de March de 2023

For those who are interested in investing in gold, it is important to know where it is mined. We analyze the top 10 gold producing countries.



Wise investors know the role gold plays in global financial markets and the monetary system. In such uncertain times, gold is necessary part of any well-diversified investment portfolio.

Of all alternatives we have of investing in gold, buying the metal and investing in companies producing it, are the most common.

In the first case, we simply put part of our savings in a safe investment. We aim to protect the purchasing power of our wealth by simply storing gold instead of US Dollars or another fiat currency.

In the second case, we are actively betting on gold prices increasing significantly in the future. If this were to happen, gold mining stocks would appreciate massively in price.

Regardless of how we want to play a bullish case for gold, knowing which countries are the main producers of it is important.

Gold prices are driven by supply and demand. Demand will depend on macroeconomic and geopolitical factors. Supply will be determined by many variables, as gold is produced in many different jurisdictions around the world.

For our analysis we will use the 2020 data published by USGD.

1) China

Many people do not know that China is one of the main gold producing countries in the world, but it has been leading the ranking for many years.

China is usually considered a manufacturing superpower, but dependent on foreign countries for the import of raw materials. And this is true in the case of base metals, such as copper or aluminum, or energy, such as oil and coal.

However, China has abundant reserves of some precious metals, particularly gold and silver. At the same time, the Asian country is also the main producer of rare metals. These are widely used in the technology industry.

If we look at the data, we will see that China extracted 380 tons of gold in 2020, which corresponds to 11.7% of world production.

If we use a somewhat generous price of $2,000 per ounce, it turns out the total value of that production was about $24 billion. And a curious fact is that China tends to export a very small percentage of the gold it mines. This means that the country has been increasing its reserves for a long time.

2) Australia

Australia is famous for its abundant natural resources, especially in the mining sector. Its economy is highly dependent on demand for industrial and precious metals. Especially from China.

Thus, Australia produced 320 tons of gold throughout 2020, approximately 10% of all world production. Most of it was exported, generating a turnover of about $20 billion. Not bad for a country of only 25 million people.

Two of the major mining companies operating in Australia are Newcrest Mining and Northern Star.

In fact, Australia is considered one of the safest jurisdictions for mining in the world. This is thanks to its rule of law and political stability.

3) Russia

The Eurasian giant has vast amounts of natural resources: oil, natural gas, uranium, industrial metals and precious metals, including gold.

While the geopolitical situation makes Russia uninvestable for most people, it is still important to consider how the supply dynamics in this country may affect global gold production.

Together with China and Australia, the top 3 gold producing countries account for a third of global gold output.

While Russia exports a large percentage of the gold mined, it has been accumulating metal domestically for a long time.

Two of Russia’s most famous gold mining companies are St. Petersburg-based Polymetal and Moscow-based Polyus.

4) United States

North America is a region with abundant natural resources. One of them is gold. Hence, it should come as no surprise that the United States is one of the main gold producing countries. It was in California where the gold rush took place.

Nevada is the main state in the country when it comes to mining activity. It is followed by Alaska, Colorado, California and Arizona. While overall a very safe jurisdiction, pro investors know that some states are more in favor of mining than others.

In total, the United States produced 190 tons of gold in 2020, which corresponds to about 6% of global production. Interestingly, it is exactly half the amount that China extracted.

The main companies in the gold sector in the United States are Barrick Gold, whose headquarters are in Canada, Newmont, Franco Nevada and Kinross.

5) Canada

North of the United States, Canada ranks 5th among gold-producing countries. It is a country with abundant land, huge natural resources and low population density, especially outside the big cities.

Thus, Canada produced 170 tons of gold in 2020, a figure similar to that of the United States.

The main companies operating in Canada are Barrick Gold, Kinross, Agnico Eagle Mines, Kirkland Lake Gold and Yamana Gold. Because they are also listed in the United States, many of them can even be found on major US stock indexes such as the S&P 500.

Something to keep in mind about Canada is that while the country has huge amounts of gold underground, its government sold all its gold reserves several years ago.

6) Ghana

Ghana is the top gold producer in Africa, ahead of South Africa, and the only country on the continent to make the top 10.

With 140 million tons produced, most of them exported to other countries, gold is one of the main sources of foreign exchange for the country.

As expected, its largest mines are operated by foreign companies, such as Kinross or Newmont.

7) Indonesia

In 7th position we have Indonesia, a country known for being a manufacturing and exporting hub.

But Indonesia, located in Southeast Asia, also has significant gold reserves underground. This translates into a considerable amount of precious metals being exported and US Dollars entering the country.

Throughout 2020, Indonesia produced 130 tonnes, with a gross market value of more than $8 billion.

8) Peru

The leading country in South America in terms of gold production is Peru. It is one of the major copper-producing jurisdictions, and copper and gold are often found in the same deposits.

The two main operating companies are the North American Newmont and Barrick. Peru ranks somewhere in the middle in terms of political risk. Something that has worsened after the last national election.

The 120 tons of gold that the country mined throughout 2020 correspond to a market value of about $8 billion. As a result, it would be very detrimental for Peru if gold production were to stop altogether.

9) Kazakhstan

Located in Central Asia, and famous for being the world’s leading uranium producer, Kazakhstan is also one of the top 10 gold-producing countries.

It is a fairly safe jurisdiction, but heavily under the influence of Russia, which can put off many investors.

Some of the main gold producers in Kazakhstan are Kazzinc, Kazakhmys and Polymetal.

Approximately 3% of global gold production in 2020 came from this country, which translates into 100 tons of the yellow metal.

10) Mexico

Tied with Kazakhstan in terms of gold production, with 100 tons mined in 2020, we find the third country in North America, Mexico, which is in 10th position.

Mexico is considered one of the best jurisdictions in the world for mining. It is also the world leader in the production of silver, the other precious metal with monetary characteristics.

In addition, with the political trends taking place in many Western countries, that are growing an anti-mining sentiment, Mexico can substantially improve its position in this sector.

Both Mexican and foreign corporations operate here. The most notable are Industrial Peñoles, Newmont, Torex Gold, Agnico Eagles Mines and Alamos Gold.

Other Countries

There are other countries that are important for gold production globally but failed to make it into the top 10 in 2020.

Some important gold producing countries are Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela in South America; South Africa, Mali and Burkina Faso in Africa; Turkey, the Philippines and Iran in Asia.

In Europe, only two countries have significant levels of gold production: Sweden and Finland.

I hope you found this analysis useful and encourage you to subscribe to my newsletter:
Clear Finances

And if you are wondering what the top 10 silver producing countries are, check out this post:
Top 10 Silver Producing Countries

Published in Gold

Comments are closed.