Tongon Gold Mine
Randgold Resources operates five gold mines in Africa Randgold Resources

African gold miner Randgold Resources has reported a 33% increase in profits to $84.9m (£66.1m) for the first quarter.

The FTSE 100 company attributed the positive performance to higher output at its mines in Ivory Coast and Mali and lower production costs.

Randgold said production at the Loulo-Gounkoto complex in Mali and Tongon in Ivory Coast were not adversely affected despite some miners going on strike at the two mines.

Total gold production increased 10% on an annual basis to 322,470 ounces (9,141.87kg) in the January to March period.

"Loulo-Gounkoto produced another solid operating quarter, marked by high recoveries, and Tongon delivered a steady performance, with good cost control," Randgold chief executive Mark Bristow said.

"The past quarter's work stoppages, which disrupted our usually stable industrial relations climate, prompted us to take a fresh look at this aspect of our business."

Rising demand for gold powered Randgold to post record profits of $511m and record production of 794,844 ounces in 2016.

Randgold operates five gold mines in Africa – three in Mali, one in Ivory Coast and one in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The company is also developing a major project in Senegal and operates several exploration projects in the gold belts of West and Central Africa.