Chris Thompson named chairman of WGC

Chris Thompson, retiring chief executive of Gold Fields of South Africa, has been appointed chairman of the World Gold Council, the Financial Times of London, reported.

Thompson, who will remain at Gold Fields as non-executive chairman, said his retirement meant he would have the time to devote to the council post, the publication reported.

The council was set up in the late 1990s to develop markets for gold consumption in jewelry, industrial processes and for investment. Many of the world’s biggest gold producers, including Anglo Gold and Gold Fields, finance on the basis of a payment per ounce of production.

Thompson takes over the reins from Bobby Godsell, AngloGold chairman and chief executive.

Godsell recently championed the council’s efforts to make gold more freely available to small-time investors, saying sentiment had shifted away from the commonly-held perception that gold was a poor investment, the publication reported. This means investors now realized central banks were no longer going to flood the market with gold.