HomeNewsGovt to finalise Mines, Minerals Amendment Bill

Govt to finalise Mines, Minerals Amendment Bill

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The government will finalise the long-awaited Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill when Parliament resumes sitting, while the promulgation of a diamonds policy will be completed in the second half of the year, an senior minister said yesterday.

In a speech read on his behalf by permanent secretary Prince Mupazviriho at a Chamber of Mines breakfast meeting, Mines and Mining Development minister Obert Mpofu said amendments would promote investment and sustainable development of the sector.
He said the new law would guarantee security of tenure, while ensuring efficient use of land under title.

“In the same vein, after recognising the importance and strategic nature of diamonds to the nation, the ministry crafted a diamond policy in consultation with stakeholders,” Mpofu said.

“The policy, which is set to be presented before Cabinet soon, is presently being analysed by legal expects.”

Mpofu defended the new fees for mining claims and exploration saying they were meant to curb speculative tendencies.

“The ministry is presently reviewing the impact of these fees on the mining sector in line with targeted objectives,” Mpofu said.

Meanwhile, mineral exports last year generated $2,6 billion and were forecast to grow by 13,3% this year.

Platinum accounts for 41,1% of the exports followed by gold (38%), chrome (13,3%), coal (7,7%) and diamonds (3,4%).

“Expansion of projects by Zimplats and the commencement of production by Unki Mine in 2011 contributed to the rise in platinum production,” Mpofu said.

He said diamonds were expected to play a more significant role in the growth of the sector.
Speaking at the same event, Economic Planning and Investment Promotion minister Tapiwa Mashakada said the government was worried gold output for the first two months of the year was down.

In January 1 053,160kg of gold was produced and in February it was down to 927,9kg.
Mashakada attributed the decline to lack of capital for further exploration.

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