Mines and Mining Development Minister Winstone Chitando said miners will not be compelled to list on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange as Government seeks to improve the local mining investment climate.
By Regerererai Muchineripi
Zimbabwean policymakers have been locked in a debate on the mining bill which required mining companies to list the majority of their shares on the local exchange or risk losing their mining rights.
The country according to the new mines bill was supposed to adopt legislation to compel mining firms with mining rights or title in the country to list the majority of their shares on the domestic stock market to foster accountability and enable locals to buy shares.
Giving his offical adress on the Chamber of Mines Zimbabwe conference in Victoria Falls Minister Chitando said no miner will be compelled to list locally, a complete diversion from former President Robert Mugabe’s policies in the past adminstration.
“In the last few months there has been talk of mining companies to list on the ZSE and this caused a lot of panic in the market. I want to say it on record that no mining company will be compelled to list on the local stock exchange because we believe forcing miners to list does not fit in the new economic dispensation,” said Minister Chitando.
Currently, only four mining companies are listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE), which was founded in 1896. The mining stocks are diversified gold miner, RioZim, Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC), coal extractor Hwange (HCCL) and gold miner, Falcon Gold Zimbabwe.
Large mining firms such as Zimbabwe Platinum Holdings and Caledonia Mining Corporation are listed on the Australian Stock Exchange and New York Stock Exchange respectively.
Mining is a strategic sector for Zimbabwe, generating about 60 percent of the mineral rich Southern African country’s exports.
Zimbabwe has over 40 mineral occurrences including gold, diamonds, platinum, nickel, chrome and lithium.
Some of the country’s mining firms with mining rights/title in Zimbabwe and are listed in foreign jurisdictions include Zimplats, which has a primary listing on the Australia Stock Exchange and HCCL; in which Government has majority stake, has a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE).
Mines and Energy Portfolio Committee chairperson Themba Mliswa at the Chamber of Mines conference said the move to say no miners are compelled to list is a welcome development.
He added that there must be consistence in terms of policy pronouncements going into the future.