Small scale miners outpaced big corporates in the third quarter 2017 gold output by 29 percent to settle at 4 043kgs compared to 3 120kgs produced by established companies in the same period.
Official data from Fidelity Printers and Refiners , the sole gold buyer in the country, indicates that during the period output for the small scale producers grew by about 58 percent from 2 543kgs in the second quarter to 4 043kgs as at end of September 2017. Primary producers on one hand recorded a 10 percent increase from 2 820ks to 3 120kgs.
In cumulative terms both primary and small scale miners have so far since January delivered 17,163kgs of gold to Fidelity with the former recording 8.494kgs compared to 8.669kgs by the later.
In September alone primary producers’ output stood at 1 046kgs compared to 1 111kgs posted in August. The figure lags behind output by small scale miners who scooped 1 449kgs in September compared to 1 446kgs in August.
According to the Fidelity report, the third quarter has recorded the highest deliveries this year at 7 162kgs compared 5 364kgs in the second quarter and 4 637kgs in the first quarter.
Zimbabwe’s gold production has been on a steady rise since January despite a few setbacks in the first quarter where mining operations were disrupted by incessant rains. The mining sector dominates the country’s exports, contributing about 60 percent of total exports anchored by gold, platinum and diamond.
Last year, Zimbabwe gold output closed at 24 tonnes and this year the Government has projected about 28 tonnes of the yellow metal by December 2017.
In March last year, RBZ introduced the performance-related export bonus scheme of up to five percent to enhance productivity and promote exports with the overall aim of lubricating the economy.