Zimbabwe’s gold export receipts rose 23% to US$464.2m in the first six months of this year from US$377.9m achieved in the prior comparative period propelled by firming prices on the international markets, Business Times can report.
The yellow metal was on average fetching US$46,600 per kilogramme (kg) during the reviewed period compared to US$35,600 per kg in 2020.
However, gold deliveries to the country’s sole buyer and marketer of the yellow metal, Fidelity Printers & Refiners (FPR), fell 6% to 9.948 tonnes during the reviewed period from 10.6 tonnes in the same period in the previous year.
“For the month of June gold export receipts went 113.1% up to US$141.5m from US$66.1m achieved during the same month last year, taking our total tally for the half year to US$464.2m from US$377.9m during the same period last year,” central bank governor John Mangudya told Business Times this week.
“This is a result of firming commodity prices and improved mining policies which encourage miners to deliver gold through formal channels.”
Gold deliveries more than doubled to 2.92 tonnes in June 2021 from 1.409 tonnes during the same period last year due to improved mining policies introduced last month.
Mangudya said the US$141.5m export receipts achieved in June was the highest this year. He said this was the first time gold export receipts have breached US$100m this year. Before the June haul, April had the highest export receipt of US$97m.
Zimbabwe achieved US$78 in May.
Having realised that the country is losing over 2.5 tonnes per month, RBZ introduced a 5% incentive for those who deliver above 20kg a month and cut royalties and the cost of importing cash on small scale miners to improve gold production in the country.
The central bank is now paying the prevailing international gold prices which had spurred on gold deliveries.
With the recent surge in production, mining experts are projecting a huge recovery during the second half of the year.
However, an FPR executive recently revealed that the country could be losing over 30 tonnes yearly valued at US$1.7bn due to smuggling.
Gold experts say given the current set up, Fidelity is guaranteed huge volumes of gold with smuggling expected to go down significantly.
Gold Miners Association of Zimbabwe chief executive Irvine Chinyenze said: “The sky is now the limit for the country’s gold sector as the authorities have put in place good policies that encourage deliveries through the formal channels.”