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Mnangagwa wants levies, taxes harmonised

by Staff reporter
29 Dec 2018 at 18:33hrs | Views
President Emmerson Mnangagwa  has demanded the harmonisation of mining levies and taxes if the local extractive industry is to be regionally attractive to foreign investors.

Speaking during the recent commissioning of a diamond mining conglomerate plant, the president said government should work with mining stakeholders in rationalising the revenue collection instruments which have for long been criticised for fleecing miners of their profits.

"Relevant authorities and stakeholders must expeditiously harmonise and rationalise various taxes and levies for us to be regionally attractive. This will be a positive step towards attracting mining investments into Zimbabwe," Mnangagwa said.

In a major change of thrust from viewing mining as having primacy over all other sectors despite its obvious limited tenure due to the finiteness of resource extraction Mnangagwa said mining should support other sectors in the area it will be operating.

This sets mining operations away from its often hostile interaction with other sectors which often are more sustainable and generally have longer life-span like agriculture and tourism.

"Mines must be seen as support mechanisms for all the development in areas in which they operate through infrastructure development," he said.

He also officiated at a cattle-breeding programme and opening of a science and computer laboratory at Gandauta Secondary School in Chiadzwa, both projects which were sponsored by ZCDC.

The cattle-breeding project is targeting communal farmers in the province while the investment in the school is meant to strengthen the education system.

He said such initiatives were a departure from the more traditional approach to community social responsibility.

"Let us move from a welfare approach to community social responsibility to activities which lead to genuine empowerment and wealth creation.

"For instance, the fact that they have built clinics and science laboratories; this is the way to empower our children. This is for the future," the president said.

Mnangagwa said his administration's thrust placed more emphasis on the communities in which mining operations are taking place.

"Similarly, sustainable exploitation of diamonds demands that the social pillar expectations be addressed. I'm happy that today as we moved around we have already seen how ZCDC is applying itself to the needs of the community which they're working in," he said.

He also commended the government-owned diamond miner that was created from the ashes of seven diamond mining companies that were operating in Chiadzwa and Chimanimani for having set aside $30 million this year in rehabilitating the environment which he said had been left in a mess by the previous miners.

"We have seen the rehabilitation that they are doing of the mess that was produced by the companies which were operating here before.

"There is nothing that is visible that was done by those companies in Marange from schools, roads, clean water, clinics, and all that. There is nothing to show that these companies had any interest in uplifting the community as they only thought of lining their pockets and so we expelled them," he said.

Source - dailynews