Impact of US sanctions on Africa Gold Refinery, Alain Goetz, and Uganda

By Musinguzi Blanshe
Posted on Friday, 18 March 2022 16:06, updated on Sunday, 20 March 2022 15:55

An employee holds a 1kg gold bar at AGR (African Gold Refinery) in Entebbe
An employee holds a 1kg gold bar at AGR (African Gold Refinery) in Entebbe, Uganda, October 4, 2018. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

The US Treasury Department has sanctioned African Gold Refinery along with Belgian gold businessman Alain Goetz–the company proprietor who claims to have sold it - and several other companies linked to him for involvement in illicit gold trade.

Goetz and his network of companies, the US treasury department said, were involved in movement of gold valued at hundreds of millions of dollars per year from the DRC. “The illicit movement of gold provides revenue to armed groups that threaten the peace, security, and stability of the DRC,” the department said in a statement.

“More than 90 percent of DRC gold is smuggled to regional states, including Uganda and Rwanda, where it is then often refined and exported to international markets, particularly the UAE,” the department further noted.