HARARE – ZIMBABWE has commercially exploited a mere 580 tonnes of gold out of a total of 13 million tonnes of proven reserves, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor, Dr John Mangudya has said.
Dr Mangudya said there was no reason the country would become the laughing stock of the world when it is rich in minerals, including gold.
Gold is Zimbabwe’s biggest mineral foreign currency earner and together with platinum they account for over 50 percent of the country’s total annual export earnings.
“We have only mined 580 tonnes over the past 36 years. We have 13 million tonnes in reserves it means we have a long way to go and people laugh at us to say these guys are so poor, but they are sitting on gold,” he said.
The Governor said gold production was one of the major foreign currency earners that the central bank will incentivise through the 5 percent export bonus facility. The incentive part is what will be paid using the notes.
As such, he said that the export incentive means selling the yellow metal locally is significantly more profitable than smuggling it into the region while it fetches higher prices locally compared to global markets.
“If we do not pay the incentive, our export proceeds will go down. There is plenty of gold in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe has the second largest deposits of proven gold per square kilometer,” he said.
Zimbabwe expects to reach 24 tonnes of gold production this year after hitting 19 tonnes last year, as decriminalization of gold panning, support to artisanal miners and favourable policies continue to bear fruit.
Dr Mangudya said that considering the critical importance of growing exports, it was crucial that the few entities generating exports are fully supported
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