By Ishemunyoro Chingwere
Gold deliveries to Fidelity Printers and Refiners (FPR) for 2018 hit a record 33, 2 tonnes up from 24, 8 tonnes the previous year as Government led stakeholder efforts to upscale production begin to bear fruit.
Of note is the continued strong performance by small scale miners whose haul for the year jumped to 21, 7 tonnes, while primary producers accounted for the remaining 11, 5 tonnes.
In a brief chat with The Herald Business, FPR head of gold operations Mr Mehluleli Dube, confirmed the statistics adding that the gold buyer will avail detailed statistics soon.
The 2018 haul means Zimbabwe managed to surpass its 30 tonnes target set by Government and should give the sector a boost as it works towards the attainment of the 100 tonnes per year target within the next five years in line with Vision 2030 by which Zimbabwe should be an upper middle income earning country.
President Mnangagwa has said the mining sector together with other key sectors among them agriculture and tourism, should play an integral part towards the attainment of Vision 2030 with mining alone expected to generate US$12 billion worth of exports annually.
Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando, is on record saying Government is working on a three pronged approached to make sure that it gets to 100 tonnes annually within the next five years.
“We have come up with a vision to produce over 100 tonnes of gold (per year) in the next five years,” Minister Chitando is on record saying.
“We are going to achieve this via a three pronged approach, firstly, Government through ZMDC owns a number of gold assets and Government is working to ensure that those assets are placed in a situation where they (can) realise their full potential.
“The second initiative, which Government has done is to create an environment, where there is increased appetite for capital to flow into the mining space.
“The third initiative is to put in place funding mechanism for small scale miners. Government is (also) coming up with the establishment of gold centres and these will be established and rolled out throughout the country,” he said. The new dispensation has put mining, agriculture and tourism at the centre of the country’s economic turnaround efforts.