Fuel challenges facing small scale miners are expected to end following the sealing of a 1 million litre weekly allocation facility by the miners, a local bank and a petroleum company.

Small scale miners are contributing 60 percent of gold deliveries to Fidelity Printers and Refiners, thereby playing an important role in economic development.

However, since October last year, the miners have been facing challenges in accessing fuel, a move that has depressed their output.

Following the sealing of the deal which will see the miners getting an allocation of 1 million litres of diesel, there is still hope to restore output to full capacity, according to Zimbabwe Miners Federation President, Ms Henrietta Rushwaya.

“We are privileged to have such a partner as we seek to boost production,” she said.

Other stakeholders in the deal welcomed the new development, saying it is one way of unlocking value of the sector.

“The realisation of the importance of the gold miners that has seen us reaching an agreement with miners. Although there are still some few issues to be ironed out, we are really glad about the deal,” said Glow Petroleum Managing Director, Mr Aaron Chinhara.

“Smale scale miners need to be included in the country’s financial inclusion system to increase production capacity,” noted Metbank Divisional Director for Consumer Banking, Mrs Sarah Tembedza.

While some conditions for the facility are being worked on, it is anticipated that such interventions are critical in ensuring the gold sector can achieve the 40 tonne output target by year end.