The government of Zimbabwe has placed a ban on unprocessed granite exports through the Statutory Instrument 127 which bans all new contracts.
The country in June last year gave granite miners 6-months to submit plans to process locally. President Mnangagwa ordered the government to come up with the ban and explained that the country was losing over 300% of revenue due to the export. According to trade data most Zimbabwean granite is sold to Italy, China, Belgium, and Spain.
Granite contributes about 1.6% of Zimbabwe’s total exports according to official data from Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe. In 2020, Zimbabwe exported $47.4M in Granite, making it the 8th largest exporter of Granite in the world. At the same year, Granite was the 11th most exported product in Zimbabwe.
The main destinations of Zimbabwe exports on Granite were Mozambique ($18.1M), Italy ($15.3M), China ($5.25M), Poland ($2.7M), and Spain ($2.16M). In 2020, Zimbabwe imported $37.7k in Granite, mainly from South Africa ($27k) and Hong Kong ($10.8k).
“When you sell that block it earns US $4.5million, but when you break it into stabs, you earn US $12.9million. What would you want, if you are the owner of the block?” said the Head of State.
In general, mining accounts for 12% of Zimbabwe’s Gross Domestic Product and is highly diversified, with close to 40 different minerals. The predominant minerals mined by the industry include platinum, chrome, gold, coal, and diamonds. The country boasts the second-largest platinum deposit and high-grade chromium ores in the world, with approximately 2.8 billion tons of platinum group metals and 10 billion tons of chromium ore.