Zimbabweâ€™s gold mining industry is poised for a boom following a consistent surge in global mineral prices for the precious metal amid expectations of an increase in production and earnings.The continuous upward trend in international prices for gold has resulted in the Zimbabwe Chamber of Mines revising upwards the projected production volumes for this year from 20 tonnes to at least 35 tonnes by year end.
According to the World Gold Council, the global prices for gold have recorded an all time high level of US$1 714 per ounce from an average of US$1 619 per ounce.
The Zimbabwe Miners Federation president, Mr. Edzayi Kufandarerwa says the surge in global prices for gold is likely to result in increased revenue inflows for the locally based gold mining firms.
â€œThe surge in prices is a positive element as it will enable us to break even,â€ said Mr. Kufandarerwa.
The price of the yellow metal is expected to further rise during this year on the back of increased demand from Asian markets.
An economic commentator, Mr. Godfrey Dupwa says the local gold mining companies should take advantage of the firming prices by increasing exports.
â€œWe hope this should translate into increased returns for the benefit of the gold miners,â€ Mr. Dupwa said.
While Zimbabweâ€™s gold mining sector is expected to play an important role in the turnaround of the economy, concern is however being raised by economic observers on the alleged laundering of the commodity by some mining conglomerates which has seen government being prejudiced of millions of dollars in potential revenue.
Calls have been made for amendments to the Mines and Minerals Act so as to restore accountability as well as the introduction of a value addition system to unlock returns.