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Zimbabwe's new multi-billion industrial hub to create 25 000 jobs

by Staff reporter
01 Nov 2022 at 05:05hrs | Views
A NEW industrial energy hub worth over US$13 billion that is set to create more than 25 000 jobs will soon be running in Mapinga Mashonaland West province in yet another transformative initiative from the Second Republic.

The plant that is set to focus on white gold, lithium, adds impetus to the country's target of a US$12 billion mining industry economy by 2023.

Already, an investor has come on board to set up the industrial hub that places Zimbabwe at the centre of the global transition to electric cars.

Lithium is a critical component in lithium-ion batteries that underpin the transition to green energy.

Lithium is currently one of the most sought-after minerals globally owing to its versatile properties including production of electric cars, heat-resistant glass and ceramics, lithium grease lubricants, flux additives for iron, steel and aluminium production and air treatment.

Highlighting the country's successes during the recent Zanu-PF National People's Congress, President Mnangagwa said new mining investments are availing more employment and empowerment opportunities, especially for women and the youth.

"New investments in the mining sector, leveraging on our large reserves of chrome, lithium, iron, platinum, gold, diamonds, as well as the anticipated oil and gas discoveries are leaping forward our country.

"We are set to emerge as a dynamic industrial hub churning out a wide range of ‘Made in Zimbabwe' goods and services. In the same vein, we have launched the Mapinga Industrial Energy Hub investment worth over US$13 billion which will create over 25 000 jobs," he said.

Mines and Mining Development Deputy Minister Polite Kambamura said the ministry signed a memorandum of understanding between the Government of Zimbabwe and Eagle Canyon International Group.

Deputy Minister Kambamura said the deal was for the establishment of a Mines Energy Park in Mapinga, Mashonaland West which will be done in phases.

"Under Phase 1 the company will set up two 300 megawatts power stations, a coking plant and a lithium plant will also be set up with feeder mines.

"Sabi Star being one of them providing the key ingredients to the energy park that is lithium. Other supporting mines will provide nickel and graphite which are key elements in the production of the products from the park," he said.

Deputy Minister Kambamura said a nickel surveyed plant and a nickel chromium smelter will also be set up in the park.

"Phase 2 of the park would entail construction of value addition facilities whereby lithium batteries and solar panels will be manufactured.

"This is in line with NDS-1 where the ministry is entailed to value add and beneficiate our minerals before export," he said.

This is a signature project which the ministry is working on and the Government is supporting the investor in all aspects to ensure success.

"The first phase would yield an annual turnover of about US$13 billion and employ a lot of people through down and upstream linkages."

The booming of the mining industry comes as gems and precious metals miners will now be compelled to pay half of their mining royalties to the Government through minerals as the country seeks to build its mineral reserves.

Previously, they were paying a portion in forex, but mineral reserves serve as a source of trust in a country given that they carry no credit or counterparty risks.

Zimbabwe hosts the second largest platinum group metals resource in the world, on the Great Dyke hence the paying of portions of royalties in minerals will see the country having solid mineral reserves.

World over this is the norm where central banks stockpile their minerals and use them as collateral or guarantee either for strengthening their economies or when borrowing.

Source - The Herald