The Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe has revealed that the first quarter of 2021 has been tough for miners as it saw a decline in the production and processing of gold, platinum, chrome, and nickel due to the COVID 19 pandemic.
Speaking to Great Dyke News 24 on the sidelines of the AGM press conference held in the capital , Chamber of Mines Chief Executive Officer Isaac Kwesu said despite the challenges, diamond, and coal recorded positive growth adding that they are expecting the sector to rebound during the second quarter.
“On the backdrop of Covid 19 pandemic challenges, 2021 first quarter has not been a good period. We realised declines in most minerals and the most affected were gold, Platinum Group Metals, chrome, and nickel.
“On a positive note, diamond and coal recorded positive growth, we anticipate the sector to rebound in the second half as we have seen improvements in the covid 19 challenges and also the support that we are getting resulted in the increase in capacity utilisation,so the overall picture for 2021 (is) we are still positive that it will be a good year,” he said.
Speaking to Great Dyke News 24, Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe President Ms. Elizabeth Nerwande said
“What we saw in 2020 when Covid started were a lot of events that were unfolding and what we did as mining industry was to immediately assume responsibilities to make sure that we abide with the covid rules and regulations.
“But l would like to thank the Zimbabwean government for allowing the mining industry to operate because the mining industry is a very important sector contributing towards the fiscus.
“We organized ourselves as the mining industry and we assisted the government as well a lot in looking at how best can we ensure that at a national level we assist them.
“It was not an easy time, the first quarter saw a dip in terms of production because everybody was trying to get used to what was happening.
“We started picking up and we are hoping that we will see a rise in production,” she said.
Meanwhile the organisation is set to hold its Annual General Meeting from the 3rd to the 5th of June in Victoria Falls with President Emmerson Mnangagwa expected to be the guest of honor.
Also in attendance will be the the Minister of Mines and Mining Development , the Minister of Finance and Economic Development Professor Mthuli Ncube and other international delegates.