GOVERNMENT has ordered nine diamond companies to cease mining operations after they failed to renew their licenses in negotiations that lasted seven months.
BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
The nine companies include Anjin, DMC, Jinan, Mbada, DTZ OZGEO, Rera, Gye-Nyame, Kusena and Marange Resources who failed to renew special grants for licenses.
Addressing journalists in the capital yesterday, Mines and Mining Development minister Walter Chidakwa said the negotiations had proved unfruitful.
“Since they no longer hold any titles these companies were notified this morning to cease all mining activities with immediate effect and to vacate the mining areas covered by Special Grants for diamonds. They have been given 90 days within which to remove their equipment and other valuables. During this period access into the premises will be by request which will be considered by the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development,” Chidakwa said.
“Now what we are now doing is that the shareholders must sit and put their shareholder agreement in front and ask what does the process of dissolution entail. They may not want to close down the company but they want to say let’s share in the proportions agreed in the shareholding agreement.
“Let’s share the assets and the liabilities, for your own information there are companies that have statutory obligations that have not been paid for quite some time such as company taxes and so on.”
Chidakwa said the diamond mining companies were slow in their uptake of the consolidation of diamond companies as this would result in government getting 51% shareholding in the companies which did not go well with the companies.
Government began to work on the consolidation on diamond mining companies last year and the process have not been as fast as it should be due to problems such as sharing of equipment among the diamond mining companies.
Since 2010, payments to government from the diamond sector have amounted to $637 million.
Chidakwa said the Chinese-owned company Anjin Investments is the only company that did not submit financially audited statements to government. He said when the issue of equipment on site has been dealt with, government will work out ways to revive production at the various concessions. Chidakwa said Kusena and Gye-Nyame will be the first concessions to be worked on under Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company.