A major threat to the successful implementation of the “Gold 4 Oil” initiative is the activities of smugglers, the Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC) has said.
Consequently, security agencies have been engaged to intensify anti-smuggling operations to ensure the initiative’s success.
A statement issued in Accra and signed by Nana Akwasi Awuah, the Managing Director of PMMC said that as part of the implementation of the anti-smuggling operations, the Company would establish offices in selected mining regions, the first of which has already been set up in Kumasi, in the Ashanti Region.
On November 23, 2022, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources issued a directive aimed at securing adequate quantities of gold to support Government’s “Gold 4 Oil” initiative.
Rooted in the Government’s pre-emptory rights under section 7 of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703), the directive stipulated, inter alia, that all gold from small-scale miners, including the Community Mining Scheme, shall be sold to the Government through the PMMC with funding from the Bank of Ghana.
The PMMC and the Minerals Commission (MinCom) were tasked by the Minister to implement those directives, which took effect from January 1, 2023.
To implement the directives, the PMMC has asked persons who wished to sell to the Company to deliver their gold in whole bars of 5kg at any of its offices either at Patasi in Kumasi or Diamond House, Accra, where the bars would be assayed, and payment effected on the spot.
“The large-scale mining companies are also required to sell part of their gold outputs to the Bank of Ghana in support of the programme,” it said.
The statement said all existing gold trading and export license holders should continue their usual business activities, except that gold purchased by them from the small-scale sector shall not be exported.
“The gold purchased by the Implementing Partners shall be sold to PMMC,” it added.
It said in the case of licence holders who have prior existing contractual obligations to supply gold outside of Ghana, they were required to write to PMMC with evidence of the contractual obligations and such companies shall be assisted by the Company to discharge in full those contractual obligations.
The statement said any other trader with gold below 5kg would be required to sell to any of the Implementing Partners.
It said following those directives, both the PMMC and MinCom have jointly held stakeholder engagements, and several issues, which were raised by the various stakeholders had been resolved, paving the way for full implementation of the programme.
The two institutions, the statement indicated, would continue to engage with stakeholders to resolve any issues that may arise during the directives’ implementation.
“We entreat all stakeholders and the public to offer their full cooperation towards the implementation of these directives,” it said.