By Abdul Rahman Suagibu –
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS, Freetown, Sierra Leone- Approximately in six weeks, Tanzania first gold refinery is set for completion, and the country will be carrying more from its prized mineral resource.
The $15 million dollar plants, located in the administrative capital- Dodoma will process raw gold produced in over nineteen regions in Tanzania and neighboring countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC0). It is anticipated to have a production capacity of minimum 40 kilogram of refined gold per day, processed from almost one ton of gold ore, said Prince Mgisha- the Chief Operating Officer of Eyes of Africa Limited – a Serbian Mining Company that owns the refinery furthered that, Tanzania is one of the top gold – producing countries in Africa, has been exporting raw gold for many years and it would now export the refined product and get more earnings from the value addition with the would be refinery. “As Africa’s fourth – largest gold producer, this is a huge step for our country and economy”, Dotto Biteko, Tanzania’s Minister for Minerals noted.
Tanzania, which saw its first international gold trading hub inaugurated in March, has about 28 mineral trading centers in operation around the country.
Reports propose that, an average of 20kg of gold is traded per day at each mineral hub. The advantages of the refinery extended to artisanal and small – scale mines in the country as well.
According to Mgisha, they will be able to have their gold refined and use it as collateral to get loans from banks.
Moreover, when the price of gold goes up, the same gold used as collateral for loans could still be sold for a higher price.
“Artisanal and small – scale mines in the country have suffered from a lack of loans, capital and poor investment, but this is about to change”, the COO said.
The refinery will also create employment opportunities for locals after it becomes operational. Meanwhile, the bank of Tanzania plans to tap into the business potential of the Dodoma gold refinery by running a gold reserve with locally refined stock.
Before now, President John Magufuli arranged the central bank to create a gold reserve to supplement national reserves. The president since assuming office in 2015 with his sectorial reforms also directed the Apex Bank to enforce control on mineral exports.
Meanwhile, the central bank unveiled that, Tanzania’s gold exports rose 23%. Being Africa’s fourth biggest gold producer after South Africa, Ghana and Mali, Tanzania hopes to see a spring back in its mining sector after a tax enforcement and revise of its mining gold in 2017 spooked foreign investors.
For New Africa Business News Abdul Rahman Suagibu Reports, Africa Correspondent
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