Government plans to set up a mining industry loan fund for small-scale miners as a viable vehicle for channelling support towards facilitating and promoting the capitalisation of their mining operations.
About 25 000 small-scale miners are registered, but 500 000 are involved in artisanal and small-scale mining. Of that, 153 000 are women and children.
Speaking during a post cabinet briefing on Tuesday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Senator Monica Mutsvangwa said the government will establish new mines and expand existing mines..
“A Mining Industry Loan Fund will be established to capacitate small scale miners. Prospecting will be enhanced, new mines opened, existing mines expanded and closed mines such as Shabani-Mashava will be re-opened,” she said.
The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development will make policy and administration ammendments in a bid to promote investment as well as sustainable development.
“Under policy and administration, the Ministry will ensure the following: amendment of the Mines and Minerals Act; the Gold Trade Act; and the Precious Stones Act; development of a Minerals Development Policy, an Artisanal Small Scale Gold Mining Strategy, and a Beneficiation and Value Addition Strategy.
” The Ministry will also establish private sector-led chrome to ferrochrome processing facilities and coal to coke processing plants while facilities for locally cut and polished diamonds will be prioritised. Private sector-led service centres will also be established, while the Mining Cadastre Information Management System will be operationalised, “said Minister Mutsvangwa.
She added : “Ministry seeks to promote sustainable exploration, mining, beneficiation, value addition, marketing and management of mineral resources for the benefit of all Zimbabweans. The deliverables of the Ministry will encompass improving the country’s ease of doing business ranking as well as business earnings from beneficiated and value added minerals.”
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