Fidelity Printers Refinery is set to start processing gold from other African countries if negotiations between the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe on the issue succeed.
BY FIDELITY MHLANGA
Afreximbank president, Benedict Oramah last week said the move was meant to grow gold exports and promote industrialisation and intra-regional trade in Africa.
“This initiative will help drive value addition to gold in those markets and bring valuable foreign exchange to Zimbabwe. It will also grow Africa’s gold export values and help pool artisanal miners in affected countries out of poverty,” he said.
Oramah said Afreximbank launched its fifth strategic plan for a five-year period from this year to 2021 to promote industrialisation and intra-regional trade in Africa.
“The continent can only retain significant proportion of the value of key commodities by moving up the value chain and creating strong domestic and regional supply chains. In line with this and in the spirit of the renewed vision of African leaders and the African Union, the bank launched its fifth strategic plan for a five year period, 2017 to 2021, to promote industrialisation and intra-regional trade in Africa,” he said.
Oramah said there was need for Zimbabwe to value add its commodities to circumvent the current situation, where the country accounts for only 0,2% of the
$22 billion platinum market.
Similarly, although Zimbabwe is ranked the largest producer of tobacco in the world, its share of the $41 billion tobacco market is less than 2%.
He said commodities remain the largest component of Africa’s exports, averaging about 85% of total merchandise exports, but there have been marginal returns accruing to the continent from the natural resources.
“It is, for instance, instructive to note that the continent receives Only 10%, $12 billion of the $120 billion global chocolate market despite the fact that it produces 75% of world cocoa, only 3% of the $3 trillion petroleum products market, while it account there for 10% of crude oil reserves; 4% of the over $300 billion global gold earnings, while accounting for 50% of world gold production,” he said Oramah said although, Zimbabwe boasts of over 30 minerals and mineral-based metals, including gold, diamond, platinum, palladium, silver, coal, cobalt, copper ore, nickel ore, ferrosilicon chromium, ammonia, graphite, phosphate rock, and stone, the returns accruing from these resources are very marginal.