Ghana has two classes of gold mining licences, these are large-scale gold mining licence and small-scale mining licence.
In the case of large-scale gold mining companies, gold sales have either been by the spot price at the London Metal Exchange or by other Marketing Agreements with overseas refineries with the approval of Government. Thus, such companies do not sell their gold locally.
In the case of small-scale, the licence enjoins them to sell gold produced from their operations to Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC) or other gold buyers licenced by Government. Thus, gold produced by small-scale miners are the ones sold locally and purchased by licenced gold dealers mainly for export or limited refining by refineries in Ghana. Exports of gold are regulated by the Bank of Ghana, Ghana Revenue Authority (Customs Division) and the Minerals Commission.
The licensing of registered companies to buy and export gold is backed by law. The application for the licence is submitted to the Minerals Commission for review and subsequently recommended to the Hon. Minister responsible for Lands and Natural Resources if deemed appropriate.
The Hon. Minister may then grant the licence, if the recommendation is accepted. The Hon. Minister does this in accordance with the powers conferred on him under sections 6 and 104 of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006, (Act 703) as well as Regulation 4 of the Minerals and Mining (General) Regulations, 2012 (L.I.2173).
It is worth mentioning that the grant of licence to deal in gold is not discriminatory between nationality, race, tribe or colour. The applicant must meet certain technical and financial conditions without which the Hon. Minister may not grant the licence.