BY FIDELITY MHLANGA
UNKI mine Chief finance Officer Colin Chibafa has been announced as president of Chamber of Mines Zimbabwe at the chamber’s annual general meeting held in Victoria Falls last week.
He succeeds Mimosa head of corporate affairs,Elizabeth Nerwande.
Thomas Gono from golden reef was appointed vice president while John Musekiwa from Zimasco is second vice president.
In his remarks Chibafa pledged to continue engaging with government to resolve the mining sector challenges.
“As part of my acceptance speech ,I would like to thank you for electing me as president of the chamber for .2021 to 2022 I am humbled by the confidence you have shown in me .During my tenure I will leverage on the work that the outgoing president has done,” Chibafa said
“I would like to consolidate the many gains that she has made in maintaining a good relationship with government.I commit that the legacy that you have built will be sustained.As the incoming team will continue to engage with government in a collaborative manner to resolve the challenges that we face.The chamber will continue to work with its trusted partner the government.”
During her two year tenure Nerwande has worked with government towards improvement of operating environment.
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She said the chamber has also set up a one stop resource centre.
“Iam happy to say that as a way of enhancing both internal and external communications ,we started a one stop resource centre at the chamber of mines to make sure that our information is upto date and that we sharing the same vision with our stakeholders and government,” she said.
“Over the past two years the chamber has worked with closely with government in many areas resulting in some improvement in operating environment .While there are still areas that requires attention of all parties to ensure improvement and enhance competitiveness of our industry.It is safe for us to say that the stakeholders have made significant strides to find each other.We thank Government for accommodating the chamber of mines wherever we requested for audience to present issues of concern to us.”
Nerwande highlighted that there were outstanding issues affecting the sector that include pending legislative amendments, insufficient forex retention and late payment of forex to gold producers.
”We have quite a number of areas that are still outstanding ,the mines and mineral act amendment,which is still under consideration.the same goes for the computerised mining cadastre system and completion of comprehensive mineral development.We also appeal government to align monetary and and fiscal policies and the foreign currency usage and management and allow expoerters to have sufficient resources to grow and sustain the business,”she said.
“Some of our members have experienced persistent shortages of critical imported inputs and as a result of continued effects of low foreign currency retention levels.The retention levels which were increased to 70% at some point,were latter reduced to 60% causing severe viability constraints.We welcome the removal of the retention period ,incentive scheme on the incremental exports
Gold producers have experienced delays in payment of nostro balances for gold delivered to fidelity printers and these has been lasting for almost 8 weeks for some producers that crippling the producers ability to import critical supplies. “
This year’s conference was being held under the theme Navigating turbulent times-sustaining growth of the mining industry in the midst Covid 19 meant to urge miners build resilience to compete in the global environment.