Excerpts of an interview held by Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando at the 2018 Cape Town Mining Indaba.
Q. What major minerals apart from platinum and diamonds are found in Zimbabwe that would be of interest to foreign investors?
A. There are several minerals in Zimbabwe apart from platinum and diamonds that of interest to foreign investors depending on their usage and demand in local, regional and foreign value chain. These include chrome, nickel, coal and related products, lithium, graphite, tantalite, rare earth minerals and gold.
Q. What is your forecast for the growth of the mining sector in Zimbabwe over the next five years?
A. As announced in the 2018 national budget statement, we project annual growth in the mining sector to be around 8.9% by 2020. Considering continued global demand for minerals and continuous improvement for the local operating environment through policy reforms that Government is pursuing we anticipate that growth rate to at least be sustained in the next five years.
Q. What opportunities do you see in the mining sector in Zimbabwe for foreign investors over the next five years?
A. The mining sector in Zimbabwe presents huge and competitive investment opportunities that foreign investors may take advantage of. This in view of the country’s huge and highly diversified mineral endowment, expected growth in the demand of minerals in the medium to long term and continuous improvement in the local business operating environment. The investment opportunities exist throughout the mining value chain and provision of support service
Q. The Government of Zimbabwe has expressed its desire that investors in the mining sector should be considering beneficiation projects rather than simply taking out the unprocessed minerals. Can you expand on this?
A. The need for enhanced local beneficiation cannot be overemphasized. This will facilitate broader linkages of the mining sector with local value chains as well as export of value enhanced products for use in region and global value chains. Policy pronouncements have been made e.g. in the platinum sector where current producers are investing in additional beneficiation facilities i.e. smelters and a base metal refinery.
Q. Are there any incentives for investors in the mining sector, and are there any restrictions on investments?
A. Yes there are several fiscal and non-fiscal incentives for investors in the mining sector these are mainly guided by the country’s competitive fiscal regime that among other things offers competitive royalty rates and corporate tax rate, allowable deductibles and rebate on capital equipment. There are no restrictions on investments in Zimbabwe. Investors are free to invest in any commodities of their choice.
Q. What is your personal vision for the development of the mining sector over the next five years and how do you see it contributing to national economic growth and development?
A. My vision for the development of the mining sector in Zimbabwe is anchored on the simple principle to diversify the sector, increase capacity to raise funding, capacity utilisation, exploration and opening of new and closed mines. — Mining Indaba Brochure.