(REUTERS) -- Ghana's full-year gold production declined by a few percentage points last year but is expected to rise in 2012, the head of its Chamber of Mines said on Friday.

Ghana is Africa's second largest gold producer after South Africa and produced 2.97 million ounces of gold in 2010. Output was originally seen rising in 2011 but in the end shrunk as a number of firms focused on longer-term maintenance and expansion projects rather than maximising existing production.

Gold output in 2011 came down 2-3 percent compared to the year before, Ghana Chamber of Mines Chief Executive Tony Aubynn told Reuters, adding details were yet to be finalised.

He said the decline could have been deeper but for the fact that Australian miner Adamus Resources poured its first gold in January last year.

Two more mines are expected to come on stream this year and we also anticipate that Adamus will be ramping up production during the year - so we are going to see production go up this year, Aubynn forecast.

In the first half of 2011, the country produced 1,497,023 ounces, up three percent on the same period of 2010, with revenues jumping 31 percent to $2.2 billion on the back of higher gold prices.