The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development has requested for $8 million to enhance efforts towards the resuscitation of shutdown mines through engagement with investors and relevant stakeholders.
Speaking at the 2022 pre-budget seminar that was held in Victoria Falls, Mines Minister Winston Chitando said his Ministry is working hard to ensure that closed mines dotted around the country are reopened to enhance employment creation and improve mining revenue going into the fiscus.
“The ministry will enhance its efforts towards the resuscitation of closed mines. A total of $8 172 604 is required to support promotional activities, engagement with investors and relevant stakeholders towards the reopening of the closed mines,” Chitando’s report read.
“More effort is also being made through Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) whereby they are engaging various investors to reopen closed mines. The Ministry intends to transform the Lupane office into a full-fledged provincial office. Currently, Bulawayo Metropolitan hosts most of the staff and operations of the province,” said Chitando.
Currently, Zimbabwe has a lot of large-scale mines that were shut down owing to the prevailing economic meltdown, leaving thousands of employees jobless.
Some of the mines that are comatose include Shabanie Mashaba Mines in Zvishavane, Nan Jiang Africa diamond mine in the Save Valley Conservancy in Bikita, among several others.
Chitando said in line with the government’s devolution and decentralisation policy, there is a need to develop the Lupane Mines office into a full-fledged provincial office.
“Funding will, therefore, be required for the acquisition of land, construction of appropriate offices, fully furnishing the offices and provision of requisite tools of trade. In this regard, the ministry requires $150 000 000 to achieve this target.”
He noted that in terms of the Mines and Minerals Act [Chapter 21:05], any mining company that invests more than US$100 million may apply for a Special Mining Lease which allows the company to negotiate various tax concessions with the Government.
Minister Chitando also said that the Ministry will capacitate Mining Promotion Corporation (MPC) by approximately $5 million to help it spearhead the exploration needs for the year 2022 by the private sector and that of the Zimbabwe Geological Survey.
He added, “It was also recommended that a lithium smelting and processing plant should be set up to produce products rather than export raw minerals. Value addition of raw lithium will bring more revenue to the government and production of finished products such as batteries given that this time due to climatic conditions, countries are moving to cleaner energy.”
Chitando said his ministry was on course in terms of achieving a US$12 billion mining industry by 2023 with a view to attaining an upper-middle-income economy by 2030.