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Women miners urged to utilise US$20 million RBZ loan facility

Mining Reporter Monday 22 July 2019

HARARE (Mining Index) WOMEN in Mining (WIM) have been urged to make use of the US$20 million loan facility availed by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) through Fidelity Refiners and Printers (FPR) to enhance productivity for women miners.

The Women in Mining Conference which kick-started Mine Entra in Bulawayo attracted 230 participants.

“The meeting underscored the need for women in mining to seize opportunities being availed by both government and the private sector such as Fidelity Printers Refiners’ US$20million loan facility as well Women-led Local Enterprise Development initiatives being supported by the large mining houses,” revealed Doreen Dzamatira, ZITF Marketing and Corporate Communications.

The central bank in 2016 availed a US$150 million Gold Development Initiative Fund in which US$20 million was allocated for gold mining projects for women with less than 10 percent of women having benefitted from the facility.

Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) president Henrietta Rushwaya highlighted the number of active women miners was a paltry 10 percent of the overall number registered in mining both legal and illegal, an indication that 3 000 are formally registered while 150 000 are operating illegally.

Zimbabwe Women Microfinance Bank Limited (ZWMB) last year revealed that no mining loans were issued within the first quarter of the banks operations.

Women were also challenged to actively participate in all platforms discussing mining matters so that their views and contributions can be incorporated in policy formulation and business formulation models.

“The day concluded with the Young Professionals Forum where the 100 youth in attendance were called on to transform the way industry is doing business in line with the increasing technological changing trends so as to allow local mining operations to be able to compete with the rest of the world,” said Dzimatira. ENDS//

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