Zimbabwe on a charm offensive to win back mining investment – by Allan Seccombe (Business Day – March 26, 2018)


Zimbabwe will finalise amendments to its mines act that have been in abeyance for 17 years in the coming few months as part of the government’s drive to create regulatory certainty and attract mining investment, Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando said on Monday.

In a sign of the change in government since the departure of Robert Mugabe after 37 years in power, the new president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, has indicated that after decades of deepening scepticism and wariness about investing in Zimbabwe the country is open for business and wants to restart the economy.

One of the key elements of that plan is kick-starting the mining sector, which, apart from Zimplats, which is 80% owned by SA’s Impala Platinum, and the platinum industry generally, is largely moribund, under-capitalised and old fashioned due to poor regulatory decisions, an unfriendly approach towards foreign investors and a challenging sociopolitical environment.

Chitando said apart from the platinum and diamond sectors, all other minerals-extraction operations could be 100% foreign owned. The platinum and diamond sectors must have 51% local ownership, but he had the discretion to change those levels and requirements.

He pointed out that any company investing $100m or more in the mineral sector could negotiate tax rates, royalties and ownership structures directly with the government.

For the rest of this article: https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/world/africa/2018-03-26-zimbabwe-on-a-charm-offensive-to-win-back-mining-investment/