Fidelity Printers and Refiners (FPR) is eying the government to budget US$50 million into the gold sector through the Gold Development Initiative Fund (GDIF) in an effort to achieve the US$4 billion gold sector by 2023.
Fidelity Acting General Manager Mr. Peter Magaramombe during a tour to assess the company’s operations by the Edmond Mkaratigwa Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development said the company was seeking assistance of the committee in getting the funding under the 2022 National Budget.
Magaramombe said Fidelity was hoping to allocate US$20 million to approximately 150 artisanal and small-scale miners in 2022 while US$30 million will be channeled to medium and large-scale miners.
“The GDIF seeks consideration for allocation of funding under the 2022 National Budget through the assistance of the Portfolio Committee of Mines and Mining Development.
“The Total Funding Requirement is US$50 million for the year 2022. This will be allocated as follows: –
“Artisanal Miners, Small Scale Miners, and Gold Value Chain Players – US$20 million. Approximate 150 miners are expected to benefit from this funding.
“Medium and Large-Scale Miners – US$30 million,” Magaramombe said.
The Fidelity boss said the whole gold sector was in need of US$1 Billion annual funding if a notable growth and development of the sector was to be achieved.
“As at end of October 2021, the GDIF had an outstanding funding pipeline consisting of proposed transactions amounting to just above USD$20 million. This amount is a fraction of the aggregate gold industry funding demand which is currently standing at USD$1 billion annually for the next 5 years (Zimbabwe Chamber of Mines, 2019),” he said.
Through the GDIF, Fidelity wants Artisanal Gold Miners to benefit through the establishment of Gold Service Centres and privately owned Custom millers across the country. Mills will enable Artisanal Miners to have access to processing equipment.
The GDIF is expected to be funding for capital expenditure and working capital to ensure project viability for small-scale miners while for medium and large scale miners the funds will support ongoing exploration, the ramping-up of installed capacity, resuscitation of closed/ dormant gold mining assets, mine development, the establishment of new mines and working capital and for Gold Value Chain Players. The funds will help to maintain their capacity to facilitate the supply equilibrium required for the operation of the gold trade.