Zimbabwe’s mineral exports marginally dropped by 3% to US$799,6 million in the first four months of the year owing to the coronavirus induced lockdown that resulted in miners scaling down operations.
Data gathered from the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZimStat) show that during the first four months to April this year, gold, ferrochromium, chromium ore, bituminous and other minerals recorded a drop as follows:
- Gold fell 7% to US$289 million
- nickel ores and concentrates tumbled 32% to US$102 million.
- Ferrochromium by 24% to US$59m,
- chromium ore by 27% to US$13m,
- bituminous coal by 21% to US$1,2 million,
- refined copper by 12% to US$517 383.
Increases were recorded in:
- nickel mattes US$267 million,
- diamond (US$43m),
- unwrought platinum (US$18m),
- granite (US$5,8m),
- gypsum and anhydrite (US$85 377)
- niobium and tantalum US$996 745.
According to the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe (CoMZ) COVID-19 disruptions in the mining sector resulted in losses exceeding US$200 million in revenue during the first 30 days.
The unattractive fixed rate of US$45 per gram offered by Fidelity Printers and Refiners, Zimbabwe’s exclusive gold buyer, is allegedly persuading smuggling of gold.
Mineral production for the second quarter of 2020 is expected to decline by about 60% compared to the first quarter, with revenue losses exceeding US$400 million.
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