Zimbabwe has signed a $4.2 billion platinum deal with Cyprus-based Karo Resources. The deal was signed between Mines Minister Winston Chitando and Karo Resources’ Loucus Pouroulis at a ceremony witnessed by President Emmerson Mnangagwa at Munhumutapa on Thursday morning.
Chitando said work would start in July, with the first output of platinum group metals expected in 2020, aiming to reach 1,4-million ounces annually within three years. The project will be located in the Mhondoro-Ngezi platinum belt, west of Harare, where Impala Platinum Holdings has operations. According to Pouroulis, the project will consist of a power station to produce electricity for the smelter, and should employ 15,000 people when fully implemented.
Mnangagwa revealed that the project was first mooted six years ago but had been held back by government red tape and “other unnamed vested interests, which are corrupt interests”. Karo Rseources did not disclose the source of funding for the venture. Karos Resources is expected to fully comply with the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act which was recently amended. The revised law removed that stipulation for most types of mining, but not diamond and platinum mines.
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