FIDELITY Printers and Refiners (FPR) said it is finalising the process of selecting companies who will supply mining equipment to beneficiaries of its Gold Development Initiative Fund (GDIF) as it moves to address challenges of inadequate machinery among small-scale miners.
FPR was hoping to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with selected mining equipment suppliers by end of last month as part of its efforts of ensuring that appropriate machinery was delivered to beneficiaries of its loan facility. FPR general manager Mr Fradreck Kunaka said the company was still finalising a few legal processes which are a prerequisite for every company hoping to tender equipment suppliers.
“The whole process of identifying suppliers is still underway. In December 2018, as Fidelity Printers and Refiners we underwent the Procurement Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (PRAZ) training which requires us to comply with certain provisions of the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Act (Chapter 22:23) before tendering for equipment suppliers and we are still working on that.
We received quite a number of applications when we posted the advert last year and we are yet to shortlist them. The ultimate objective is to phase out the inefficient stamp mill technology as well as use of mercury in the recovery of Gold by 2020 in line with Minamata Convention on Mercury,” said Mr Kunaka.
“The value of equipment is determined by the loan applications from the miners. Based on miners’ requirements, equipment worth can be ascertained. The period varies with the type of equipment that is being purchased, as some types of equipment require to be manufactured after payment has been received. Some other type of equipment the miner collects from supplier soon after payment. In general with all loan requirements satisfied it takes between two weeks to a month for the miner to receive the equipment,” he said.
Mr Kunaka also said that the company had follow up mechanisms put in place to curb abuse of the loan facility.
“There are regional mining consultants who are based in the various regions and they do all the monitoring on the ground,” he said.
The Sunday News