With the mining concession on Lufafa Mountains past Pigg’s Peak in the northern Hhohho region estimated to contain 251 000 ounces of gold, the mining deal entered into with an American company in the country has been evaluated to be worth over E4 billion.
The actual evaluation of the deal is about E4 013 615 489 (US$263 million) when considering the current price of gold that stands at E16 331.06 ($1 050) an ounce and basing it on information revealed by the mine’s Mihlakayifani Dlamini that 251 000 ounces of gold have been discovered at the Lufafa Mountain.
The evaluation has been done by Quartz Africa, a digitally native news outlet, established in 2012, for business people in the new global economy. The outlet is known for publishing bracingly creative and intelligent journalism with a broad worldview, built primarily for the devices closest at hand: tablets and mobile phones.
“The mining concession near Pigg’s Peak in northern Swaziland is estimated to contain 251 000 ounces of gold. Even with the price of the yellow metal testing rock-bottom multiyear lows of about US$1 050 an ounce, that would make the potential value of the partnership at about $263 million,” reported Quartz Africa.
Meanwhile, Dlamini speaking during a consultative meeting at the Pigg’s Peak Hotel late last year disclosed that the mining would take place at a 425 000 hectares area, which is occupied by some homesteads. He said they were, however, yet to discuss what was to become of those homesteads.
Unlike in previous times, gold at the Lufafa Mine will be purified in the country up to 98% and Dlamini said since the country did not have a licence to purify gold, it would be done up to 97 or 98% and then sent to South Africa for final purification.
He said the gold would then be sent back to the country where it would be kept by the Central Bank of Swaziland.
Much against popular belief that the mine is owned by New York King-of-Bling Jacob Arabo’s company, Jacob & Company, Commissioner of Mines Sam Ntshalintshali recently told the Sunday Observer that the shareholders of Lufafa Mine Pty Limited are SDZ Holdings LCC, the Swaziland government and His Majesty the King in trust for the Swazi nation. Explaining further, he said SDZ Holdings LCC – a company registered in the State of Delaware, United States of America – holds a 50 percent shareholding in the mining venture while government holds 25 percent and the remaining 25 percent is held by the Ingwenyama in trust for the Swazi Nation.
“Lufafa Mine Pty Limited, formerly Jacob & Co. Swaziland Pty Limited, is a private company incorporated in the Kingdom of Swaziland in terms of the Companies Act No.8 of 2009.
The company has been granted a 25-year mining licence and the first phase of the mining would soon comence.”
Prospecting has already been completed and the company is ready to start the actual mining of the gold. About 75 Swazis are already employed to start the work. Musketeer Mining Contractors have been engaged to extract the gold.