Ishemunyoro Chingwere Business Reporter
The mining sector is on course and is primed to attain its Government set 2023 milestone of hauling minerals worth US$12 billion, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube has said.
The mining sector is chasing a Government target of growing annual exports to US$12 billion by 2023 up from US$2,7 billion attained in 2017.
The 344 percent envisaged minerals output is part of Government’s quest to revive and grow the country’s economy and attain Upper Middle income economy by 2030.
President Mnangagwa is on record saying agriculture and mining will be the key anchors on which Vision 2030 will be attained.
Presenting a progress report on the country’s structural economic reforms since the advent of the new dispensation, Minister Ncube said Government has noted that the mining sector is progressing well on its audacious target.
Minister Ncube highlighted some major mining investment projects that are progressing well and are expected to feed into the country’s exports basket by 2023.
Among them is the US$4,2 billion Great Dyke Investments Platinum project, which is now under construction phase.
Still on platinum, he highlighted the US$4 billion Karo Resources project, which Government has noted is also ahead of schedule and is poised to get to production before 2023.
Pressuring mining title holders to stick to their timelines is one of the key strategies that Government has adopted to fend off speculative holding of rich mining title concessions.
The Government is talking tough on the use it or lose it mantra, which is primarily targeting speculators.
Minister Ncube also highlighted the Arcadia Lithium Mine being developed as well as several coal projects sprouting in Matabeleland North — some of which the President toured in July.
“Examples of progress to date are the US$4,2 billion Great Dyke Investments Platinum Mine already under construction.
“There is also the US$4 billion Karo Resources Mhondoro-Ngezi Platinum project ahead of schedule.
“Then the Arcadia Lithium Mine being developed and new coal mines opened,” said Minister Ncube.
Before even production starts at Arcadia complex new Harare, the firm has received several enquiries about its product while several uptake agreements have been penned with many global batteries and tiles manufacturing players.
The lithium batteries are expected to lead the revolution in electric vehicles in the future.
At policy level, Government is reviewing and updating mining legislation to ensure it is in tandem with the set target.
There is also a deliberate push towards enhancing exploration and investment in mining as well as modernisation and computerisation of the mining title administration system.
Local beneficiation and value addition of minerals is also another strategy, which will drive the sector’s export growth and this will also entail the creation of more high value jobs.