Chrome Production Surges by Over 4 Percent


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DT Correspondent

Chrome production in Zimbabwe experienced a notable surge, increasing by 4.37 percent in 2023 compared to the previous year, as reported by the country’s statistics agency, ZIMSTAT.

This surge translated to a production of 1,204,755 MT in 2023, compared to 1,154,340 MT in 2022.

Despite facing a 46.62 percent decline in production during the first quarter of 2023, dropping to 206,354 MT from 386,576 MT in 2022, the subsequent quarters painted a more optimistic picture.

The second quarter of 2023 witnessed a 14.89 percent increase in production, with output reaching 274,978 MT, surpassing the 239,333 MT produced during the same quarter in 2022.

Although the third quarter of 2023 saw a decline Lithium production surged by over 760 percent in 2023, driven by the activation of several mines and lithium processing facilities.

According to data released by the country’s statistics agency, ZIMSTAT, production skyrocketed to 745,455 metric tonnes (MT) in 2023, marking an impressive 763.5 percent increase from the 86,330 MT produced in 2022.

The first quarter of 2023 witnessed a surge of approximately 130.9 percent, with production reaching 25,000 MT compared to 10,825 MT in the same quarter of 2022. In the second quarter, production spiked by about 405.8 percent to 79,689 MT from 15,755 MT in 2022.

During the third quarter of 2023, production soared by approximately 807.5 percent to 325,479 MT, compared to 35,866 MT in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. Similarly, the fourth quarter saw a substantial increase of approximately 1220.1 percent, with production reaching 315,287 MT, up from 23,884 MT in 2022.

Looking ahead, projections indicate continued growth in lithium production, solidifying the country’s position as a major player in the global lithium market.

In 2023, according to the Minister of Mines and Mining Development,  Zhemu Soda, lithium exports, despite the US$12 Billion vision by 2023, stimulating that lithium will fetch half a Billion annually, the lithium sector realized US$600 million in exports.

“Lithium exports were set at half a Billion US dollars, but a total of over USD 600 Million was realized from the export of Spodumene, Petalite, and Lepidolite, despite export bans that were effected in 2023, underscoring the importance of these lithium minerals to our economy,” Minister Soda said.

According to Soda, the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development will continue to work on strategies to help the country realize more gains from its mineral resources. These strategies include developing Special Purpose Vehicles for mineral exploration, opening new mines, re-capacitation of dormant mines, expanding current mining projects, curbing mineral leakages, increased capacity utilization, and ultimately value addition and beneficiation across the whole sector.

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