Mines Parliamentary Portfolio Committee has flagged areas that need priority in the National Budget and made recommendations which speak to the broader sectoral picture and more wholesome budget allocation for the mining sector.
Chairperson of the Mines Parliamentary Portfolio Committee, Edmond Mkaratigwa said that there is a general consensus that the role of the Mining Sector is key to the national economy and there is need highlighting for prioritising the sector as key among others.
“Let me add my voice on other specific issues critical for the turnaround of the economy and the social status of the general populace of Zimbabweans and those supporting her concerted efforts towards the sustainable national development of its people.
“First, Zimbabwe should consider funding ongoing engineering innovation works in the country in support of the mining sector, there are small tools being imported from other countries,” Mkaratigwa said.
He added that some of these upcoming miners lose their hard earned currencies in procuring these tools abroad.
“This can be a low hanging fruit for Government, as a result, I advance that the Ministry of Finance consider in this budget, to incorporate funding of existing related engineering entities so that these small machines are produced locally with an advantage of retaining foreign currency in the country and profitability of the investment,” Mkaratigwa said.
He stated that government can accelerate innovation hubs programmes in polytechnics by acquiring tools from China among other international jurisdictions, have students break them down and improve and patent then manufacture them locally.
He also acknowledged government’s move to decentralize gold buying and the development of gold processing centres which he pointed as a noble plan to avoid leakage.
“However, it is important that we have time-frames and guaranteed financial arrangements and disbursement so that we lay this necessary foundation for national economic and social growth at the appropriate time for timely take off and returns.
“Prevention of corruption and plugging illicit financial flows for example smuggling of gold is mandatory and must accordingly receive budgetary and policy support,” Mkaratigwa added.
Opening up of closed mines so as to create employment is another key issue he raised, he called on the ministry of finance to mobilize financial resources for exploration of the country’s mineral resources.
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