Kenya will award its first commercial gold mining lease to gold producer and explorer Goldplat in October, a senior government official told the Business Daily newspaper on Friday, enabling the company to exploit large gold deposits in the Lolgorien area in the country's Rift Valley.
The Kenyan government will earn 4 percent in royalties of the value of each export consignment as well as a corporate tax tied to profits that Goldplat will make.
"We will issue Goldplat a special mining lease in October as prescribed in the law to allow for commercial exploitation of gold at its Kilimapesa site to begin," Commissioner of Mines Moses Masibo told the paper.
Last year, Goldplat got permission to start commercial gold production at Kilimapesa's processing plant.
Gold prices are up as much as 20 percent since June as investors seek refuge from stock market turmoil and sovereign debt crises. They breached $1,800 an ounce for the first time this week, having almost tripled from 2008 lows of $680.
Environment and Mineral Resources permanent secretary Ali Mohammed also said the ministry was considering granting a mining lease to mineral exploration firm Red Rock Resources in Migori, in western Kenya.
"These deposits should enable us to export between two and 10 tonnes of gold every month after granting two commercial mining licences this year," Mohammed told the paper.
(Writing by Yara Bayoumy; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)