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BNC heads for VFEX

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BY SHAME MAKOSHORI

BINDURA Nickel Corporation (BNC) is set to delist from the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) next month and switch to the forex-indexed Victoria Falls Stock Exchange (VFEX) under a strategy spelt out by chairperson Muchadeyi Masunda on Friday, giving impetus to the firm’s growth ambitions.

The delisting, tentatively set for December 15, will bring to an end BNC’s 50-year relationship with the ZSE, having joined the bourse in 1971.

Masunda also sees the plan as a crucial step towards bolstering Zimbabwe’s plan to transform the mining industry into a US$12 billion economy by 2023.

Zimbabwe’s mines currently generate about US$3 billion annually.

On Friday, the BNC boss spelt out his vision for the VFEX in papers sent to shareholders, rallying them to give a nod to the transaction during an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) slated for December 13.

He said apart from its ability to raise foreign currency, special fiscal and monetary incentives extended to the VFEX would unlock shareholder value.

“Your company is evaluating several projects which could be viable but will require substantial capital to be raised in foreign currency,” Masunda said.

“The VFEX listing will make it easier for the company to access such capital.

“The enhanced exchange control regime for VFEX listing, will be of benefit to the company, through the increased export proceeds retention associated with incremental production.

“Shareholders, on the other hand, stand to directly benefit as their shares will trade in United States dollars with no restrictions on repatriation of dividends and disinvestment proceeds.

“BNC shareholders are being called…to attend the EGM of the company…to consider and, if deemed fit, to approve the termination of the company’s ZSE listing and the admission of the company’s shares on the VFEX.

“To enable BNC to effectively play its part (in the US$12 billion vision), while enhancing shareholder value, your company is asking you to consider and approve the proposal…,” said Masunda.

The VFEX began trades in October last year, after which Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube extended incentives, most of which are not offered at the ZSE.

Yet despite the sweeteners, the VFEX has been hit by a listing drought.

Only two firms are currently listed on the bourse, over 12 months since it was established.

Seed technology outfit, Seed Co listed on the first day of trading on October 26, 2020 with croc skins processor, Padenga following this
year.

Last month Caledonia Mining Corporation chief executive officer Steve Curtis also sent prelisting papers to shareholders advising them of a planned listing on the bourse.

Invictus Energy managing director Scott MacMillan has also indicated the firm could list on the VFEX.

Follow Shame on Twitter @ShameMakoshori

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