Zimbabwe’s platinum sector has revived, staving off years of controlled greenfield as investors kick start new tasks to boost existing operations.
The country’s industry is dominated by South African operators such as Anglo Platinum, Impala Platinum and Sibanye Stillwater. New investor Karo Resources has also entered and will today hold a ground breaking ceremony at its site in Mashonaland.
It will operate on land taken over by the government from Zimplats, the Zimbabwean unit of Implats. President Emmerson Mnangagwa is expected to attend the event.
Karo has signed a $4.2 billion deal for the investment, while Tharisa has also advanced an $8 million funding facility for Karo to kick start the Zimbabwe operation, which will include a mine and beneficiation facility.
As activity peaks, mining firms have been rushing to invest in beneficiation facilities. Failure to process the metal inside Zimbabwe will attract a 15 percent levy on exports of raw platinum.
Anglo Platinum said yesterday that it was now finalising its smelter facility for the Unki Mine. This leaves Mimosa – which is jointly run by Implats and Sibanye – as the only mine that has not yet made official its position to comply with Zimbabwean requirements. -BUSINESS REPORT