The first certification and unveilling of the maiden hallmarked gold bar produced and processed in the country has been held to promote trading of the commodity on the international bullion market.
It is also to add value to the country’s raw gold resources, as well as help address the low incomes derived from the export of raw gold while properly accounting for gold exported from the country.
Expressing excitement at the event, the Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr. Alan Keremanten said: “The unveilling is significant in the history of the country, and also marks the beginning of a new era in our gold sector. It clearly exhibits the country’s commitment to its industralisation programme, which is on course. It will help to change the paradigm of development in this country and create jobs for our teeming youth”.
He said the task of refining gold to the purest quality by Gold Coast Refinery Limited is a highly skilled process which will help to transfer Gold Coast Refinery expertise in this field to Ghanaians, and that is how Ghana wishes to partner with investors to promote business in this country.
He added that the gold sector is very important to the economy because of its contribution to the country’s Gross Domestic Products over the years. Indeed, trading hall-marked gold on the international bullion market will be a remarkable achievement in the more than 300-year old gold trade in the country.
He emphasised that the certification of gold will promote the country’s commodity onto international bullion market, and dealers will then accept it as credible and valuable to be negotiated for and purchased.
Professor Alex Dodoo, Director-General, Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), expressed delight at the Authority’s contribution to the national economy by certifying purified gold in the country.
He explained that certification of any product, including precious metals like gold, is an established conformity assessment activity that provides confidence to customers, regulators, industry and other interested parties – to the effect that the product conforms with specified requirements, including products performance, safety, interoperability and sustainability.
Product certification facilitates trade, market access, fair competition and consumer acceptance of products on national and international levels.
“Globally, the certification and hall-marking of gold is undertaken by national standards bodies, the leading agencies in developing countries,” he said.
He indicated that the GSA has developed and adopted over 10 national and international standards for gold, precious minerals and jewellery, adding that the Authority currently has a world-class gold assay laboratory equipped with state-of-the-art equipment comprising X-ray Fluorescence Machine and all the requirements for fire assay analysis.
These methods are the only acceptable ones world-wide in the assay of gold, he said.
He revealed that the GSA intends to work with stakeholders to ensure that gold purified in Ghana is traceable and of known province.
“These are exciting times in Ghana, and GSA is pleased to be contributing its share toward a modernised and transformed Ghanaian economy for a Ghana Beyond Aid.”
Chairman, Gold Coast Refinery Limited, Dr. Said Deraz, expressed profound gratitude to government for its support – adding that the refinery is a modern facility with state-of-the-art equipment and machinery to produce the highest purity of refined gold.
It has the capacity to conduct internationally acceptable assaying and produce Hallmarked Gold.
“With our plant size at full capacity operation, we will be able to absorb the entire gold production in Ghana and the sub-region of West Africa. This gives our operations a regional scope and the potential to stage Ghana as a gold-hub in the sub-region,” he said.