Montepuez Ruby Mining (MRM) has announced that it will re-open its main mining operations in Namanhunbir, in Montepuez district, in the northern Mozambican province of Cabo Delgado, as from the second week of March. MRM shut down all its mining work, with the exception of critical operations, on 22nd April 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to an MRM, a team from the Cabo Delgado Provincial Health Directorate recently assessed the measures undertaken by MRM in its mining concession to mitigate the impact of Covid-19, and the company accepted all the recommendations made by the health authorities to minimise the risk of infection.
According to MRM General Manager, Harald Halbich, in line with the decisions issued by the health team, the MRM management planned a phased resumption of operations “On 22 February 2021 preparations began to ensure that everything is ready for the workers to return without any problems,” he said.
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The company now intends to gradually lift the suspension of workers’ contracts and readmit them to their jobs. MRM was able to avoid dismissing any of its workers because of the financial support provided by the majority shareholder, the British company Gemfields, which owns 75% of MRM. The other 25% is held by a Mozambican company, Mwiriti.
The company said that despite the continual challenges faced as a result of the pandemic it remains committed to guarantee strong production and successful auctions of rubies in the 2021 financial year. It further added that the workers’ jobs are guaranteed, as are the company’s tax contributions to the Mozambican state.