Zimbabwe mulls scraping platinum and diamond mine ownership rules

Bloomberg/Waldo Swiegers

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The change to policies introduced by former President Robert Mugabe will increase the appeal of Zimbabwe to the world’s top platinum producers, including Anglo American Platinum and could generate interest from Russian diamond miner Alrosa.

Thursday 07, March 2019

(Bloomberg) --Zimbabwean finance minister has said that a rule requiring local investors to control platinum mines will be scrapped and foreigners will be allowed to own 100 per cent in a bid to revive investment.

Mthuli Ncube, the Zimbabwe’s Minister of Finance, sai, “We are removing that indigenisation rule, which is discouraging foreign direct investment.”

“We say Zimbabwe is open for business you can only be open if you allow ownership of 100 per cent, added Ncube.

The new rules could be extended to diamond mining, added Winston Chitando, the Mines Minister.

Abandoning the requirement to transfer a 51 per cent stake to locals is part of wider efforts to stimulate the southern African nation’s economy. President Emmerson Mnangagwa has sought to water down some of the contentious rules of his predecessor as mining investment dried up.

Zimbabwe holds the world’s second-largest known reserves of platinum-group metals after South Africa, plus substantial deposits of gold, diamonds, lithium, iron ore, coal, chrome and nickel. The changes to the ownership rules would need to be ratified by parliament.

Johan Theron, Impala Platinum Holdings’ Spokesman, said, “We remain encouraged by ongoing efforts by the government to open the economy to investment and growth.”

TAGS : Ex-Zimbabwean president , Robert Mugabe , indigenisation rule, Mthuli Ncube, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, platinum, diamond

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