Australian mining firms closely watching after Tanzania imposes an export ban – by Daniel Flitton (Sydney Morning Herald – March 20, 2017)

A surprise export ban imposed on gold and copper concentrate by Tanzania’s President has forced several Australian mining firms to seek urgent assurances about the future of their operations in the African nation.

The export ban is seen by some as the latest manifestation of a populist drive affecting politics worldwide, amid a backlash to globalisation most obviously characterised by Donald Trump’s rise to the White House.

Perth-based Tanga Resources director John Stockley will fly to Tanzania on Monday for talks with local ministers after the country slapped a ban on the export of mineral concentrates and ores for metallic minerals, including gold, copper, nickel and silver.

“If the Tanzanians wish to encourage foreign investment, they’re not helping by making these sorts of announcements,” Mr Stockley said. Tanga has what it describes as a high-grade gold prospect in Tanzania and Mr Stockley said in six years of exploration in the country, the company had never had trouble.

But despite some initial confusion as to the scope of the ban, first announced by Tanzania’s Ministry of Energy and Minerals on March 2, Mr Stockley said his local staff appeared confident the export of gold bars would not be stopped and so was not too upset.

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