The Government has granted a 100 percent rebate on the gold royalty to small scale miners who exceed the previous year’s mineral deliveries to Fidelity Printers and Refinery (FPR).
The Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Fred Moyo, revealed this at the weekend during a Minex regional expo held in Zvishavane.
He told the gathering the Government had put in place a clause that every miner who exceeds gold deliveries of the previous year will be rewarded with a rebate.
The royalty rebate will be determined by FPR in consultation with Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) after every six months in comparison to the same period of the previous year.
Dep Min Moyo said the 100 percent gold royalty rebate would be applied to producers effective January 2017.
“With a view of boosting gold production and delivery to FPR, the Government has put in place a clause that every miner who exceeds his/her gold deliveries of the previous year (2016) by 20 percent or more will be granted a 100 percent rebate on the royalty paid,” he said.
“This means Government will pay you back the one percent of your gold deliveries which you will have sold to FPR.”
The Deputy Minister said the rebate was meant to incentivise small scale miners and ensure the country meets its target of 28 tonnes of gold deliveries to FPR this year as announced during the 2017 fiscal policy statement.
He commended the eight percent increase in gold production in the past two months, which is higher than the same period in 2016 despite the disturbances caused by floods.
“The royalty rebate is an incentive towards reaching the 28 tons of gold as our target as a country. I’m glad to say we have recorded a positive increase of eight percent in the last two months of this year as compared to 2016. I am well informed by the Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) that the recent floods affected small scale gold producers operations, thereby hindering the expected deliveries.
“I urge you to work safely in mines, with the environment and with the communities,” said the Deputy Minister.
In a technical report on the situational analysis of floods in the gold sector prepared by ZMF, it was highlighted that small scale gold miners in the country have been highly affected by incessant rainfall experienced between January and February. A majority of miners who were mining in shafts faced the challenge of water flooding the shafts up to the top level.
Many vertical shafts have depths ranging between 15m to 50m while inclined shafts stretch to 150m. Shafts on fried rocks have since collapsed due to the incompetent rocks. Some roads to the mines and bridges have been washed away, making it impossible for miners to access their sites.
Ore transportation has also been a challenge to transporters who are scared of being stuck in the mud.
Pumping water has tripled production costs due to increased underground water logging.