September 27, 2016 / 6:02 PM / 2 years ago

UPDATE 1-Ghana's gold output up 38.6 pct at 1.99 mln ounces in first half

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ACCRA, Sept 27 (Reuters) - Ghana’s gold output rose 38.6 percent in the first half of 2016 to 1,993,850 ounces from 1,438,656 ounces a year ago, boosted mainly by new mining operations, the Ghana Chamber of Mines said on Tuesday.

Africa’s second-largest gold miner after South Africa earned $2.43 billion from gold in the first six months compared with $1.75 billion in the same period last year, the Chamber said.

Ghana’s active gold miners include Newmont Gold Corporation and South Africa’s Gold Fields. Asanko Gold started production this year.

Gold is the single biggest revenue earner for the West African country which also exports cocoa. It is currently under a three-year aid deal with the International Monetary Fund to restore fiscal balance to an economy dogged by public debt and high inflation.

The country is just recovering from a crippling energy crisis and lower gold prices that forced mining firms to cut output and send hundreds of employees home.

Diamond production dipped to 96,880 carats in the first half of this year from 106,061 carats last year while manganese rose to 752,782 tonnes compared with 553,549 tonnes, the Chamber said. (Reporting by Kwasi Kpodo; editing by Susan Thomas)

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