Gold Fields Limited - Net Earnings Increase by 40% to R1.4 Billion

JOHANNESBURG, Feb. 4 /CNW/ - Gold Fields Limited (Gold Fields) (JSE, NYSE, NASDAQ Dubai: GFI) today announced net earnings for the December 2009 quarter of R1,409 million compared with earnings of R1,007 million and R483 million in the September 2009 and the December 2008 quarters respectively. In US dollar terms net earnings for the December 2009 quarter was US$187 million, compared with US$129 million and US$54 million for the September 2009 and December 2008 quarters respectively.

Net earnings excluding gains and losses on foreign exchange, financial instruments, exceptional items and share of profit or loss of associates after taxation for the December 2009 quarter was R1,022 million compared with earnings of R625 million and R542 million in the September 2009 and the December 2008 quarters respectively. In US dollar terms this equates to US$135 million for the December 2009 quarter, compared with US$80 million and US$60 million for the September 2009 and December 2008 quarters respectively.

    
    December 2009 quarter salient features:

    -   Attributable gold production of 900,000 ounces;

    -   Total cash cost similar to previous quarter at R147,648 per kilogram,
        but up 5 per cent in dollar terms from US$586 per ounce to US$613 per
        ounce due to stronger rand;

    -   Notional cash expenditure up 4 per cent from R207,754 per kilogram
        (US$826 per ounce) to R216,830 per kilogram (US$900 per ounce);

    -   South Deep production up 10 per cent on previous quarter and 50 per
        cent year on year;

    -   Cerro Corona production of 98,400 equivalent ounces up 60 per cent
        year on year.
    

Interim dividend number 72 of 50 SA cents per share is payable on 1 March 2010.

Statement by Nick Holland, Chief Executive Officer of Gold Fields:

Gold Fields has again benefited from the higher gold price delivering a 40 per cent increase in earnings for the quarter ended 31 December 2009. This significant increase was achieved against a background of mainly safety related challenges.

I deeply regret the six fatal accidents at the South African operations during the quarter and we extend our condolences and sympathy to the families of our colleagues. Safety is our number one value and we remain committed not to mine if we cannot mine safely, and to apply, without exception, our safety rules.

In the South Africa region, Beatrix has maintained its consistency, while South Deep remains on-track to deliver its 300,000 ounce target for the fiscal year. Driefontein halted production for seven days, or almost one third of December's production, mostly due to a major seismic event that occurred on 6 December 2009. Kloof was also held back by safety stoppages in line with the "Stop, Think, Fix, Verify and Continue" philosophy. However, both these mines' performances in the earlier part of the quarter were robust and the end result was that their production was similar quarter-on-quarter. That said, both operations can and should do better, and our focus during 2010 is to achieve greater consistency at these two flagship operations.

Discussions have commenced with unions, associations and the DMR regarding the introduction of a six day work week to ameliorate the effects of the Christmas and Easter breaks, and lost shifts due to safety and other stoppages. The objective is to improve efficiencies while maintaining current conditions of employment, especially working hours, in order to create a more sustainable environment and to avoid possible retrenchments.

In the West Africa region, Tarkwa had a steady quarter and looks set for a good 2010. Damang was affected by a 13-day accelerated re-build of the SAG mill, prompting significant repair work which should sustain this operation well into the future. We look forward to an improved performance from West Africa over the next half year, as a result of improved efficiencies and throughput.

In the South America region, optimisation strategies continue to deliver outstanding results at Cerro Corona. The quarter-on-quarter increase of 11 per cent in gold equivalent ounces is especially pleasing as the mine benefits from a stronger copper price and higher production.

In the Australasia region, Agnew also delivered a solid performance. Production at St Ives decreased slightly quarter-on-quarter mainly due to continued rehabilitation work at the Belleisle underground operation, which is expected to be completed in the next few weeks.

The focus for the next half year will continue to be on safe production, development to ensure improved flexibility, as well as on our promising exploration portfolio.

The full results are available on the Gold Fields website:

http://www.goldfields.co.za

About Gold Fields

Gold Fields is one of the world's largest unhedged producers of gold with attributable production of 3.6 million ounces* per annum from nine operating mines in South Africa, Ghana, Australia and Peru. Gold Fields also has an extensive growth pipeline with both greenfields and near mine exploration projects at various stages of development. Gold Fields has total attributable Mineral Reserves of 81 million ounces and Mineral Resources of 271 million ounces. Gold Fields is listed on JSE Limited (primary listing), the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), the Dubai International Financial Exchange (DIFX), the Euronext in Brussels (NYX) and the Swiss Exchange (SWX). For more information please visit the Gold Fields website at http://www.goldfields.co.za.

*Based on the annualised run rate for the fourth quarter of F2009

SOURCE Gold Fields Limited

For further information: For further information: Gold Fields Limited, Reg. 1968/004880/06, 150 Helen Road, Sandown, Sandton, 2196, Postnet Suite 252, Private Bag X30500, Houghton, 2041, South Africa, Tel +27-11-562-9700, Fax +27-11-562-9838; Enquiries: Media and Investor Enquiries, Willie Jacobsz, Tel (508) 839-1188, Mobile (857) 241-7127, email Willie.Jacobsz@gfexpl.com; Nikki Catrakilis-Wagner, Tel +27-11-562-9706, Mobile +27(0)83-309-6720, email Nikki.Catrakilis-Wagner@goldfields.co.za; Media Enquiries: Julian Gwillim, Tel +27-11-562-9774, Mobile +27(0)82-452-4389, email Julian.Gwillim@goldfields.co.za


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