New investor for Kamativi mine

HARARE - The Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) has secured a foreign investor willing to inject $100 million in capital to revive the defunct Kamativi tin mine (Kamativi), deputy Mines minister Fred Moyo has said.

Moyo told Parliament on Wednesday that Kamativi — which has been closed for almost 21 years — is going to be functional within a year once the investor has received the green light from Cabinet.

“An investor has been identified by ZMDC and there has been recommendation to the Mines ministry.

“The ministry, through the minister, will then seek approval from Cabinet, so (at the moment) I am not able to say who the partner is going to be,” said Moyo.

He added that while ZMDC had picked one investor, they were many others who are “eager” to inject fresh capital into the project.

“Kamativi is historically known for tin. I wish to inform honourable members that tin is hosted in pegmatite rocks which are found in Zimbabwe and the rocks (also) carry other minerals such as tantalite and lithium,” said Moyo.

Apart from Kamativi’s historical tin resource, Moyo noted that lithium is used for specialised batteries and tantalite is used in computers and cell phones, thus many investors were seeking to engage government for potential investment.

However, Chegutu West legislator Dexter Nduna expressed concern over Moyo’s reason not to reveal the identity of the investor, citing that government was promising the country a pie in the sky.

“Minister, I would want to know if you have knowledge of which country we are going to have a joint venture with in terms of opening Kamativi mine, because since 2012, we have been fed with this talk of an investor that never materialises.” Nduna said.

The Matabeleland North-based mine was opened in 1936 and shut down in 1994 after international tin prices fell to levels that rendered operations unviable.

The price depression emanated from the devastating tin price crash in 1985 when overnight, price crashed from about $18 000 per tonne to less than $3 000.

According to the ZMDC, between $35 million and $50 million is needed to resuscitate operations at Kamativi,

The mine has about 40 million tonnes of open cast tin reserves considered one of the best in the world.

A tonne of tin currently fetches between $17 000 and $22 000 on the international market.

Tin mining was a major economic activity in Zimbabwe’s north western part and during its peak the mine produced one million tonnes of base metal annually.

Comments (3)

If that is true, its unfortunate that such an important investment would need cabinet approval, at this desperation of employment creation, it would require adhoc and immediate approval considering how scary investing in Zimbabwe could be. To see that time functional would be a great blessing to the people and the economy. There will be also down stream employment creation such as the construction etc

ananian - 22 May 2015

How much is available for looting?

Mukanya - 22 May 2015

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