Harare (New Ziana)-President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Thursday said the intention by Zimplats to inject US$1.4 billion towards expanding its mining operations is a sign of growing confidence in the Zimbabwean economy.
The investment will see the setting up of integrated projects, including the development of a new mine, expansion of smelter, construction of an additional concentrator, base metal refinery, sulphuric acid plant and the setting up of a 110 Megawatt solar power plant.
Speaking at the signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Agreement between the Zimbabwe government and Zimplats, President Mnangagwa said the prospects of new investment into the country dovetailed with his administration’s mantra of rebuilding the economy.
“The signing of this agreement attests to the growing confidence of global capital in our economy and the Second Republic’s policies.
“It further reflects the importance my administration accords to the mining sector in speeding up the realisation of the outcomes outlined in the National Development Strategy- 1 and ultimately the attainment of Vision 2030,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said his administration would continue to provide an environment which allowed the private sector to operate.
“The constant engagement between the mining sector and Government as well as other sectors of the economy to ensure that we all move in the same direction remains at the heart of my administration.
“We shall thus continue to facilitate companies doing business in Zimbabwe to grow their investments through increased production, productivity and profitability. Brick by brick we are building the Zimbabwe we all want,” he said.
He said the envisaged investment of US$1.4 billion by Zimplats was a welcome development.
“Government welcomes the intention by Zimplats to construct a base metal refinery as a crucial step towards local mineral beneficiation and value addition of the platinum group of metals.
“The sulphuric acid plant will contribute strategic raw materials needed in the local manufacturing of fertilisers and help reduce the importation of sulphuric acid. The development of a 110MW solar power plant is also commendable,” he said.
President Mnangagwa added : “This will not only bolster our thrust of becoming energy self-sufficient, but also the attainment of Sustainable Development Goal number 7 on energy, anchored on the diversification of the energy and power mix. The net effect of these multi- faceted investment programmes will undoubtedly improve the standard of living of the people and create massive employment opportunities”.
He commended the mining sector as a whole and the platinum sub sector in particular, for ongoing explorations and revival of closed mines.
“It is therefore pleasing that the platinum mining sub sector has a number of developments taking place, including extensive exploration, opening up of new mines as well as expansion of existing projects.
“These will see the platinum sub sector contribute USD3 billion towards the target of a US$12 billion mining sector, by 2023. This is in line with my Government’s efforts to ensure the existence of an enabling environment that supports the growth of the mining sector,” said President Mnangagwa.