Zimbabwe: How politically connected elites are benefiting from the country’s gold

By Farai Shawn Matiashe
Posted on Friday, 5 August 2022 16:11, updated on Saturday, 6 August 2022 13:05

Illegal artisanal gold miners work at an open mine after occupying parts of Smithfield farm, owned by the former President Robert Mugabe's wife Grace Mugabe, in Mazowe, Zimbabwe, 5 April 2018. REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo

President Emmerson Mnangagwa is targeting revenue of up to $12bn – a vastly ambitious quadrupling – from the mining industry by 2023, but opaque activities by by allies of the ruling elite are a major stumbling block for the government.

Platinum is expected to produce $3bn, while gold exports, one of the country’s biggest foreign-currency earners, would produce $4bn. To achieve this, the mining sector has been growing at an unprecedented rate, with small-scale and artisanal miners taking to many mining areas.