FINANCE minister Patrick Chinamasa has announced that the government will continue to allow Midlands-based Africa Chrome Fields (ACF) to import fuel without paying tax, saying the company had made significant contributions to the economy through export receipts.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA
Speaking after touring ACF in the company of members of the Parliamentary portfolio committees on Mines and Finance, Chinamasa said government was happy with the progress at the mine.
“We are happy with the progress we have seen here and the government, which is putting an emphasis on foreign direct investment, will continue to support ACF,” he said.
Chinamasa said the $220 million project had brought more revenue to the fiscus in export receipts, corporate tax and pay as you earn from its 990 workers.
“More than anything, I need foreign currency to come in, I need foreign receipts because most of the problems we are facing now are an issue of foreign currency shortages,” he said.
ACF, which is currently mining and exporting raw chrome fines, pledged to start smelting high-grade chrome on site by March next year.
Project liaison manager Ashraff Kaka said the project would go ahead after it was cleared by the Environmental Management Agency last month.
“We are about beneficiation. At ACF, we understand that and I am confident that by February next year, our Auxthemic plant will be online and we will be producing high-grade low-carbon chrome here,” he said.
Kaka said the provision of electricity at the plant would significantly help in expanding value-addition options at the plant.