Ishemunyoro Chingwere Business Reporter
Zimbabwe will next month host the biggest international chrome sector conference with hopes abound that it could herald the beginning of investment into the metal that has been left largely unutilised despite its huge potential.
The conference was confirmed by the International Chrome Development Association president, Mr Phoevos Pouroulis in Mhondoro yesterday during President Mnangagwa’s tour of Karo Resources’ mining asset for a progress update.
Mr Pouroulis is also a representative of Tharisa PLC who are the major shareholders in the Karo Resources Mhondoro PGM mine which is investing US$4,2 billion in a platinum group metal project in Mhondoro.
Speaking after apprising President Mnangagwa on the group’s progress, Mr Pouroulis said Zimbabwe’s huge chrome potential will be showcased to key global chrome industry players who are set to converge for their 35th annual conference in Victoria Falls.
The conference will run from May 5 to 9 this year.
“As mentioned on numerous occasions, Zimbabwe has numerous natural resources with huge potential particularly within the platinum group metals and chrome mining sector, which play a major role currently and in the future of this economy,” said Mr Pouroulis.
“Chrome in particular is a major asset for the country with the second largest chrome resources housed right here beneath our feet.
“This means that the world’s chrome industry will be meeting in Zimbabwe in less than three weeks’ time with the International Chrome Development Association (ICDA) holding its 35th annual meeting in Victoria Falls.
“As president of the ICDA I battled hard and fought many detractors to ensure this meeting takes place in Zimbabwe to showcase to major players, the natural resource potential of this country and hopefully attract further investment,” he said.
Zimbabwe is endowed with large chrome deposits, which have, however, not been fully utilised.
With Government working towards Vision 2030 by which the country should attain upper middle income status, the mining sector is expected to achieve US$12 billion in export earnings and key to this will be making sure that the country benefits from all its mineral deposits.
The ICDA has a membership spanning over 24 countries from five continents and prides itself as the authoritative voice of the industry, dealing with chromium in all its forms.
It was formed in 1984 and its headquarters are in Paris France.
As an authoritative voice of the chrome industry, the ICDA organises international conferences for the industry and its partners where prominent industry players are invited to speak on a wide array of topics among them global industry overviews, profiles of national industries and providing a general forum for exchange and networking.