Large-scale gold output from Ghana increased by six per cent from the previous year’s output, the Ghana Chamber of Mines has disclosed.
Figures contained in the 2019 Annual Report Report of the Chamber indicates that the country’s large-scale mining sector’s gold output for Ghana increased from 2.807 million ounces in 2018 to 2.989 million ounces in 2019.
However, gold assayed by the Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC) on behalf of Licensed Gold Exporting Companies, which represents small-scale production, decreased by 20% – from 1.984 million ounces in 2018 to 1.588 million ounces in 2019.
“This 20 per cent decrease in the small-scale mining sub-sector resulted in a decline in total gold production from 4.792 million ounces in 2018 to 4.577 million ounces in 2019,” The Chamber of Mines President, Eric Asubonteng told a virtual AGM last Friday, May 29, 2020.
“Consequently, the large-scale sector improved on its contribution to national gold production, from 59 per cent in 2018 to 65 per cent in 2019 whereas the small-scale sector accounted for 35 per cent of national gold production in 2019; a decline from 41 per cent in 2018.”
He further explained that the drop in production from the small-scale gold sector could be partly attributable to a clampdown on illegal mining.
He said out of the mineral export revenue of US$ 4.5 billion generated in 2019, the producing member companies of the Chamber returned US$ 3.3 billion to the country, representing 73 per cent of export proceeds.
Ghana became the leading producer of gold on the African continent after taking over from South Africa in 2018. Ghana’s gold output of 4.8 million ounces in 2018 surpassed South Africa’s 4.2 million ounce total for the first time.