Stakeholders in Zimbabwe’s gold industry have pledged to increase their deliveries of this product due to concerns over declining production.
According to Scott Sakupwanya, owner of Better Brands Jewelery, one of Zimbabwe’s top gold agents, the country also needed to do more to stop the leaks of corrupt traffickers and smugglers costing the country billions of dollars.
âIf the leaks are stopped, gold will easily meet our country’s foreign exchange needs. We want to tell the players in the gold sector that we can all reach greater heights without resorting to smuggling, âsaid Sakupwanya.
“We urge all gold players to ensure that they deliver gold officially, as this will help improve our foreign exchange situation and indeed our economy.”
Sakupwanya further underlined the industry’s willingness to ensure fair trade to allow Zimbabwe to benefit from its gold reserves.
Zimbabwe’s Minister of Mines, Winston Chitando, also highlighted the importance of the Zimbabwe National Association of Gold Buyers (NGBAZ) in boosting Zimbabwe’s long-term gold production.
“I am happy that the organization has prepared for this noble cause, as the leaks threaten gold deliveries,” he said.
About $ 1.2 billion of gold is illegally exported from Zimbabwe each year, according to the government, and small-scale miners, who mine most of the precious metals in Zimbabwe, blame the RPF’s low prices and late payments for leaks.
Gold accounts for most of Zimbabwe’s annual mining income in addition to being its largest source of foreign exchange, and the government hopes to be able to extract 100 tonnes of the metal by 2023.
Small-scale miners were identified as critical to achieving this goal as they accounted for around 60 percent of annual gold deliveries to the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s Fidelity Printers and Refiners (FPR).
The RPF is the sole buyer, refiner and exporter of gold in Zimbabwe.