Mr Mike Hammah, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources says between 2009 and 2011 the investment inflow for Ghana’s mining sector was $2.5 billion.
He also said gold production increased consistently; 3.1 million ounces in 2009, 3.4 million ounces in 2010 and 3.6 million ounces in 2011 which is the highest gold production ever in Ghana, according to a report by the Ghana News Agency.
The report cited him as saying tax on gold contributed GH¢1 billion, representing 27.61 per cent of total collection of the Ghana Revenue Authority in 2011.
It also contributed 42 per cent of total merchandise export within the same period, he said.
According to the Bank of Ghana exports of gold amounted to $1.5 billion in the first three months of 2012.
The report indicated that about 28,000 people were employed in the mining sector, while mineral royalties returned to the mining communities in the Western, Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions from 2009 to 2011 stood at GH¢41 million.
The corporate social responsibility programme of the mining companies stood at GH¢43 million within the same period, the report said.
Mr Hammah, according to the report, said six mining regulations have been passed by Parliament to operationalise the Minerals and Mining Act 2006 (Act 703).
The Ministry is facilitating the passage of the Mineral Development Fund Bill to help to address developmental issues in mining communities, he said.
The report noted that corporate income tax increased from 25 per cent to 35 per cent while effective mineral royalty rate also increased from three per cent to five per cent.
A proposal for a Windfall Tax is under consideration, it added.
Meanwhile, Ghana is the seventh highest gold producer in the world.
The country moved from the eighth place in 2010 to seventh in 2011 globally in terms of gold output, according to figures compiled and released April 5, 2012 by the London-based metals-consulting company CRU.
Ghana’s output of gold in 2011 was 102 metric tonnes, up from 92 metric tonnes in 2010, the figures show.
Mining has been going on in Ghana for over 100 years.
Gold, diamond, bauxite and manganese are mined in the country. Recently, large deposits of iron ore have also been discovered.
By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi