New York Stock Exchange-listed concern, Caledonia Mining Corporation, has encountered impressive signals in gold exploration works that the miner is carrying out in the country.
The impressive initial results, come at a time when the miner is carrying out an elaborate expansion drive with which it is targeting to grow its local gold production output from just over 58 000 ounces per annum to 500 000 ounces (around 15,5 tonnes) by 2030.
Caledonia Mining Corporation is the parent company behind Blanket Mine in Gwanda and in October last year signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government which sought to grow the miner’s local footprint.
Caledonia Mining Corporation chief executive Mr Steve Curtis signed the MOU with Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando signing for the Government at a ceremony that was also attended by President Mnangagwa.
Speaking on the sidelines of the recently held 121 mining conference in Capetown, South Africa, Caledonia Mining Corporation Chief Financial Officer Mr Mark Learmonth told the Assay TV that the New York Stock exchange miner is encouraged by the geological analysis it has made so far.
“We must have evaluated two dozen projects in Zimbabwe,” said Mr Learmonth.
“The geological prospect is astounding. Some of the stuff really blows you off,” he said.
In an advertorial published in our sister paper, The Sunday Mail this week, the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development said Caledonia Mining Corporation’s expansion plan as articulated in the MOU it signed with the Government, is one of the major projects expected to anchor the 2023 mining sector milestone.
Under the milestone, the Government is targeting to grow mining sector exports from US$2,7 attained in 2017 to an annual haul of at least US$12 billion from 2023 onwards.
Mr Learmonth told the Assay TV that Caledonia employs 1 640 locals and that it is happy with the arrangement that sees them getting both US dollars and the local currency for their gold deliveries.
“We sell our gold to the Government . . . then we get paid in a combination of US dollars and the local currency and we actually use that local component to pay for our local expenses . . . and the balance (USD) is more than adequate to cover the cost of material that we import around the mine and then to repatriate profits,” he said.
Word coming from Caledonia will be welcome to the Government which has set the mining sector
as one of the key pillars with which it seeks to foster rapid economic development towards upper
middle-income status by 2030 as set out by the President.
To achieve the required growth, the Government is targeting to expand already existing mining projects to maximum capacity utilisation as well as lure investment into new projects.