Tanzania's largest open-pit mine, Buzwagi Gold Mine, could close down its operation in December this year, a senior mine official said Wednesday.
Asa Mwaipopo, manager of the mine, disclosed the new development when speaking with members of Tanzania's Parliamentary Committee on Energy and Minerals, who visited the mine.
Owned by Acacia, the mine was discovered in 1950 whereas mining activities in earnest started in 2009, but it is expected to shut down in December because it has run out of gold reserves.
Mwaipopo said that after reaching cut three in mining gold, it has become evident that gold reserves are running out but at the moment the mine is expanding mining areas to keep the mine going.
Mwaipopo said that in this year's strategy they plan to add cut four in the mining of gold and if it will prove futile then that would be the end of mining activities. He added if cut four fails then they will recycle old rocks to extract gold for two and finally will close the largest mine in the country for good.
He also said that communities around the mine have benefited in many ways since they have built schools, dispensaries, laboratories, roads and promoted sports. Mwaipopo said that the management is yet to officially inform employees because by doing so it likely to demoralize them.
MPs expressed concerns over the plan to close operation, saying the move will affect government revenues and cut jobs for hundreds of people.