‘Zimplats — big player in the country’s economy’

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Science and Technology minister Heneri Dzinotyiwei says he is impressed by the scope of work underway at Zimplats mining operations in Selous, describing the company as a big player in the country’s economy.

Dzinotyiwei embarked on a familiarisation tour of the mine, which he described as “worthwhile” on Wednesday.

He said the technology applied in processing the mineral was impressive because it brought value addition to local production trends.

“It is always exciting to notice the nature of technology applied,” he said.

“You (Zimplats management) and the public want to see greater achievement for Zimbabwe and the community. We want to support you.”

Dzinotyiwei said it was heartening to note Zimplats was processing the mineral at a time when there were increasing concerns about extensive exportation of raw materials.

Zimplats chief operating officer Stanley Segula said the minister’s tour was important as it gave them an opportunity to demonstrate that operations were above board.

“We have managed to make the whole matter (of transparency) visible and our accounting process open,” he said.

“Many have come here, including parliamentary committees, and we have been able to take them through the process.”

Head of corporate affairs Busi Chindove said there was misconception they did not declare all minerals — including copper, nickel, cobalt and silver — extracted from platinum.

“We declare all metals, but there is an impression Zimplats only declares platinum.

“But our documentation shows we declare all these metals to MMCZ, Ministry of Mines on the RBZ CD 1 forms. All minerals are declared as well,” she said.

Zimplats, a subsidiary of South Africa’s Impala Platinum Holdings, is currently engaged in a tussle with the Indigenisation and Empowerment ministry over its reluctance to cede 51% to locals, exclusive of the 29,5% entitled to the government.

Indigenisation and Empowerment minister Saviour Kasukuwere has since given the platinum miner until next Tuesday to fully comply with regulations.