Total: Given the situation in Venezuela, estimations based on historic/statistic data, such as UBC-14 or IGF-18, are not anymore reliable. Investigative journalism data, 6 times as high, such as reported by Reuters in 2019 are believed to be more close to the reality → 300,000
Min/max: no data. a range of +/- 50,000 appears to be possible → 250,000 - 350,000
Female participation: no data. Possibly low in conditions of armed conflict. Working hypothesis 5% → 15,000
Gold: All data presumably refering to gold → 300,000

2019: 300,000 reports:

Organised criminal networks and illegal armed groups have staked control over different parts of the region, where they command obedience in most of the mining towns and over an estimated 300,000 miners.
(Quoted source of the ASM population figure is

2018: 50,000

(IGF-18): 30,000 - 70,000

2014: 48,000

(UBC-14): Gold-only data produced by statistic modelling:

Expected ASM population: 25,000 - 70,000 
Estimated ASM gold production: 7 - 15.1 t/a

2014: 15,000

(SPDA-14): 15,000
Data apparently for gold and “illegal” only.

1999: 35,000

(ILO-99): Employment: 30,000 - 40,000
Number of mines: n/a
Illegal mines: n/a

ReferenceYearCitationArchived CopyLink
ARM-182018Barreto, M.L.,Schein, P., Hinton, J., Hruschka, F. (2018): The Impact of Small-Scale Mining Operations on Economies and Livelihoods in Low- to Middle-Income Countries. ARM, Envigado, PACT,…
IGF-182018IGF (2018): Global Trends in Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining (ASM): A review of key numbers and issues. IIED/IISD, London,…
GMA-182018UNEP (2018): Global Mercury Assessment 2018. Technical Background Report E-Annex. Chapter 3.2. UNEP,…
UBC-142014Seccatore, J., Veiga, M., et al. (Univ. of British Columbia - UBC) (2014): An estimation of the artisanal small-scale production of gold in the world. Scitotenv.…
SPDA-142014Heck, C., coord. (2014): La realidad de la minería ilegal en países amazónicos. SPDA.…
ILO-991999Jennings, N. (1999): Social and labour issues in small-scale mines. Report for discussion at the Tripartite Meeting on Social and Labour Issues in Small-scale Mines. ILO,…
ASM DATA - Country Database Record
Country CodeVEN
ASM StatusExisting (data assessed)
Country Count1
Data year2019
Publ. year2019
ASM Miners300,000
- gold300 ,000
Data curation as reported
Inc. DevMinno
- min.250,000
- max.350,000
- female15 ,000
ASM Commoditiesgold
  • country/venezuela.txt
  • Last modified: 2022/10/27
  • by Felix Hruschka