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Mnangagwa woos mining investors

by Staff reporter
01 Jun 2019 at 06:40hrs | Views
President Mnangagwa yesterday said investments into the mining sector and mining value chain industries are welcome and safe, adding that Government remains ready to support the implementation of sustainable growth strategies in the critical industry for the attainment of Vision 2030. He said this while officially opening the Zimbabwe Annual Mining Conference organised by the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe.

"Investments into the mining sector and mining value chain industries are welcome and safe in Zimbabwe," said the President.

"We continue to prioritise the processing and issuance of exploration licences in order to revamp mineral exploration across the country.

"The facilitation for the opening of new and closed mines, capacity utilisation as well as projects expansions and local beneficiation are ongoing, with increased momentum."

The President's remarks come at a time when investors are falling over each other to inject resources into the sector, with Anjin Investments and Alrosa set to start mining diamonds in Marange soon.

Another diamond miner will be licensed in the next few months, while a new platinum miner is set to join Unki Mines, Zimplats and Mimosa. The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development has benchmarked the mining sector to become a US$12 billion industry by 2023.

President Mnangagwa said the mining sector is a "vital cog" in the country's drive towards socio-economic prosperity and the attainment of Vision 2030. He said the revival of old mines and opening of new ones, and the increase in capacity utilisation at operational mines have seen the country witnessing "unprecedented investor interest" in the mining sector and associated value chain industries.

The President challenged institutions of higher learning and the mining sector to closely collaborate for the exploration and utilisation of the vast unexplored mineral deposits in Zimbabwe. He explained that his administration remains determined to pursue the ongoing reforms to ensure the country is thrust on the path to prosperity and development.

Critically, President Mnangagwa said the current situation where investors are moved from office to office "should stop", as a number of potential investors have been left frustrated.

"Let me once again reassure you that my administration is committed to pursuing the ongoing reforms so that our country is firmly back on course towards prosperity and development," said President Mnangagwa.

"In line with our engagement and re-engagement policy, we shall play our part to guarantee that our country undertakes its affairs in line with the internationally accepted practices, being always alive however, to our national interests.

"The ongoing cross-cutting reforms will therefore undoubtedly enhance our country's competitiveness as an investment destination. We are determined to progressively eliminate bottlenecks, red tape and all forms of corruption with Government bureaucracy.

President Mnangagwa said he was informed that many investors were going away disappointed after "being moved by our people, companies and entities from office to office, pillar to pillar".

"But that should stop. And as Government we have created ZIDA (the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency), a one-stop centre . . ." said President Mnangagwa.

He added that Government recognises the importance of strong and effective legal, regulatory, fiscal and monetary frameworks, as well as policies and practices for the mining sector to deliver sustainable economic and social development. President Mnangagwa challenged stakeholders in the mining sector to objectively deliberate and align policy recommendations for the sector to achieve "win-win outcomes" for investors, Government and communities as a whole.

"As a listening Government, we will continue to be responsive to your views. I however, challenge you to intricately balance between making profits, return on investment and the paramount importance of national interests as well as the need to improve the quality of life of people," said President Mnangagwa.

He called on the ministries of Mines and Finance to "speedily" conclude the development of a consolidated fiscal regime for the ease of doing business. At the same time, the implementation of identified projects under the 100-day cycle framework must infuse focus and collaboration in planning and implementing investment projects.

President Mnangagwa said under the Second Republic, there is no longer "us" and "them".

"We must close ranks and work as one, to leapfrog our economic growth. This must be the new culture and the new normal.

"Let us move together as Government, industry and communities to derive shared benefits from our country's rich mineral resource base," said President Mnangagwa.

He also said Government is "unequivocal" in its commitment to develop the requisite enablers such as transport infrastructure, water and other related utilities.

President Mnangagwa said adequate, reliable, modern, efficient and cost-effective power supply is fundamental to the success of all sectors of the economy, including the mining industry. The conference ran under the theme, "Realising Vision 2030 through resource led growth".

Source - the herald