Minister: Zimbabwe to Pull License From Mining Giant Zimplats

Posted September 7th, 2011 at 2:51 pm (UTC-5)
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A Zimbabwean official says the country is moving to cancel the operating license held by platinum giant Zimplats.

In a report in Zimbabwe’s state-run newspaper The Herald, Saviour Kasukuwere, the minister for indigenization and black empowerment, accused Zimplats of failing to come up with a plan to turn over 51 percent of its shares to black Zimbabweans.

Kasukuwere said the South African-controlled company did not deliver an “acceptable” proposal at the end of a 14-day ultimatum.

The minister said that as a result, Zimplats has been deemed non-compliant with a 2008 law requiring all foreign-owned companies to cede a majority stake to black Zimbabweans.

If its license is suspended, Zimpats would be the first major mining company forced to stop operating under the “indigenization” law.

Critics have said the mining regulation will scare away investors and destroy the country’s mining industry.

Food production in Zimbabwe suffered a steep fall after President Robert Mugabe and his supporters began seizing white-owned commercial farms in 2000 for transfer to blacks.