Gold Fields to release $21m to reconstruct Tarkwa-Damang road
Goldfields Ghana Limited, as part of its Silver Jubilee celebration, has announced plans to invest US$21million into the rehabilitation of Tarkwa-Damang road in the Western Region.
The upgrade of the 33km service road, which links the two mining towns and surrounding communities, is expected to last twenty (20) years upon completion.
According to the gold mining giant, the reconstruction works on the road had already started, generating job opportunities for the youth in communities along the road corridor.
Alfred Baku, Executive Vice President and Head of Gold Fields West Africa disclosed this at the external launch of the 25th Anniversary of Goldfields’ operations in Ghana.
Mr. Baku further revealed Goldfields’ plans to transform the Tarkwa T&A Park into a modern stadium and Tarkwa-Apinto Government Hospital into a first class medical facility.
“We are equally excited about our plans to upgrade the Tarkwa T&A Park to a modern stadium. A committee has been set up to carry out the necessary feasibility studies and cost estimation. The same committee will also undertake a similar exercise for the upgrade of the Tarkwa Apinto Government Hospital into a first class medical facility and a model for quality healthcare delivery in the region and the country,” he added.
Gold Fields 25years journey in Ghana
He said since Gold Fields started operation in Ghana in 1993, it has been able to turn the low grade Tarkwa deposit into a flagship mining operation that delivers returns to shareholders, including the Government of Ghana, year-on-year.
Goldfields Executive Vice President stated that his outfit was determined to transform the country’s mining sector and that can be witnessed in the US$1.4billion investment made to revive the Damang mine in 2016.
“Our Tarkwa and Damang mines create over 7,000 direct and indirect jobs annually. Even with a conservative multiplier effect calculation, we positively impact the livelihoods of between 70,000 and 100,000 people year-in year-out, mostly within our host communities and along our supply chain,” he said.
Mr Baku disclosed that the company has paid about US$1billion in dividends to shareholders, since the beginning of their surface mining operations in 1998, and of this amount, the Government of Ghana received US$100million in dividend payments.
In addition, Goldfields has paid over US$1.2billion directly to the Government in corporate taxes and royalties.
“Our communities have been direct and major beneficiaries of our social support, and the company has spent approximately $44million in these communities; providing access to potable water, supporting our local farmers, putting up health and educational facilities, training our community youths, building critical infrastructure, and extending bursaries and scholarships to bright but needy pupils and students.
“Several accountants, doctors, engineers, and other professionals have been able to build their careers on the back of our scholarships and bursaries,” he stressed.
The South African High Commissioner to Ghana, Her Excellency Lulu Xingwana, said South Africa has good mining laws that regulate the sector and strongly believes that had been Goldfields’ guiding principles in Ghana.
According to her, South African Social & Labour Plan ensures that wealth generated from mining is effectively distributed to workers and hosting communities, adding “I believe Goldfields is not moving away from this practice.”
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