The Ghana economy was given a boost last Wednesday, by a whooping amount of GH¢589.767million as final dividend from AngloGold Ashanti Mining Company Limited.
This brings the total amount of dividends earned for the year ended December 31st, 2007, to US$1.6m. The amount translates into US$0.20per share.
AngloGold Ashanti, since its appearance on the Ghanaian soil, has paid a total value of $15.5million as dividends to the Ghana Government.
Royalties paid to the government also amounted to US$38.5million within the same period.
This was made known in Accra when the mining firm, led by Mr. Christian Rampa-Luhembwe, Vice President of AngloGold Ashanti in the West Africa Division, officially presented a cheque of GH¢589.767 to Mrs. Esther Obeng Dapaah, Minister for Lands, Forestry and Mines, who received it on behalf of the Ghana Government.
According to Mr. Rampa-Luhembwe, the company was working hard to ensure continuous sustainability of its operations in the Ghanaian economy in order to improve efficiency whilst maximising profit.
To this effect, the company has earmarked an amount running into millions of dollars for the purchase of additional mining equipments for its operations.
“This year, we have launched a multi-million dollar turn around strategy to sustain and expand the modernisation efforts but more significantly the objective is to put the mine on a solid stead to produce more quality ounces at low cost. We will spend US$44.4million alone on the turn around programme alone”, said Mr. Rampa-Luhembwe.
The Iduapriem mine of the company (AngloGold Ashanti) at Tarkwa in the Tarkwa/Nsuaem Municipality is also to benefit from the modernisation and expansion exercise with an amount of US$57million.
The Iduapriem mine last year produced 185,000 ounces of gold and it is expected that upon completion of the project, the mine would produce a 15percent increase of its production.
Mr. Rampa-Luhembwe averred that his outfit as part of its corporate social responsibility would together with four other mining companies continue to pursue the eradication of malaria from the Tarkwa Municipality as was done in Obuasi which is now in the second phase.
He therefore appealed to the government to come to its aid as the company was being faced with illegal mining activities; a situation he said was affecting the company a lot.
Madam Dappah, who received the amount on behalf of the government of Ghana, pledged the government's committed effort in creating an enabling atmosphere for mining activities in the country.
She therefore called on all mining companies to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency's regulations in their operations to ensure the good health of the people.