- Rand Refinery Limited, which is one of the oldest refineries in the world, would be operating at a limited capacity as the coronavirus continues to spread
- The refinery, which is Africa's only refiner of gold, would stay open as South Africa's president, Cyril Ramaphosa, enforces a lockdown from midnight of Thursday, March 26, 2020
- Rand Refinery Limited processes gold for gold producers such as AngloGold Ashanti and Gold Fields
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The Rand Refinery Limited, located in South Africa, is on record as Africa’s only refiner of gold and one of the oldest in the world.
The global spread of the coronavirus has, however, negatively affected operations at the refinery, causing it to operate at a limited capacity.
The limit in operations has become necessary as it attempts to curb the spread of the virus in the wake of a national lockdown.
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Bloomberg.com reports that the Johannesburg-based refinery was, however, exempted from the lockdown which begins at midnight on Thursday, March 26, 2020.
The lockdown also excludes processing plants for platinum-group metals, Gwede Mantashe, the minister of mineral resources and energy, said.
The facility would shut down its smelting plant but will continue to operate with about 100 workers, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Praveen Baijnath, explained.
Rand Refinery Limited processes gold for producers such as AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. and Gold Fields Ltd., which operate mines throughout Africa.
Meanwhile, the world’s biggest gold and platinum mines, both located in South Africa, are gearing up to limit the infection of the coronavirus.
The coronavirus has already disrupted economic activities all over the world and could cause further challenges in places where people operate in close proximity.
Bloomberg.com reports that the companies are also distributing flu shots and overhauling medical examinations.
Both mines reportedly generate about $12 billion in sales every year and the metals rank among South Africa’s biggest exports.
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