Zimbabwe’s mining sector is on track to meet the target of generating US $12bn annual revenue by 2023, Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando has confirmed. The ministry is presently carrying out an assessment of performance of the industry since the launch of the policy in 2019, set to be released at the end of this quarter. According to Minister Chitando, the assessment was looking at the performance of each mineral and development of particular projects.
In the gold mining sector, minister Chitando said that Caledonia and Kuvimba are coming up with new projects and reviving others while the ministries of Mines and Finance and Economic Development, together with RBZ, are working on policy measures to curb leakages and increase deliveries to Fidelity Printers and Refiners. “While we await the results of the assessment currently going on, it is clear that the fundamentals for the minerals are in place to meet the US $12bn target,” he added.
In the platinum mining sector, the minister said that existing entities namely Zimplats, Unki and Mimosa are expanding their operations while new projects are at various stages of development. “Great Dyke Investments has opened two box cuts at its site in Darwendale and would be operational by 2023 while Bravura, which has operations near Zimplats, has completed its drilling and would open its first box cut by the middle of the year. Karo Resources also in Selous, is completing its exploration,” he said when he appeared before the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development.
In the diamond mining sector, Chitando said that the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) is looking to produce three million carats this year while Murowa Diamonds is investing US $450m in expanding its operations. Another diamond miner, Alrosa, is developing its sites in Malipati and Tsholotsho. “We also have one major agreement on value addition (of diamonds) which will be signed by the end of this month,” added minister Chitando.
Chrome, nickel and steel mining
The minister further added that, in the chrome, nickel and steel sectors, chrome production had declined although companies in the ferrochrome sector had increased or maintained production. “Afrochine Smelting has installed two more smelters at its plant in Selous while Zimasco has maintained its production capacity while Jinan Corporation is expanding its smelting capacity,” said Chitando. He also confirmed that a joint ground-breaking ceremony for an iron ore mining operation and a carbon steel plant in Manhize in Mvuma would be held in June.
Coal and hydrocarbons mining
In the coal and hydrocarbons sector, he said that there were various thermal power projects at various stages of development with the sector likely to beat its expected contribution of US $1bn to the overall US $12bn target.
Under the US $12bn mining roadmap, gold is expected to contribute US $4bn, platinum US $3bn while chrome, iron, steel, diamonds and coal will contribute US $1bn. Lithium is expected to contribute US $500m while other minerals will contribute US $1.5bn. The government expects that the industry will be able to generate over US $20bn by 2030.