Platinum Firms in Zimbabwe Send Refinery Plans, Sunday Mail Says

Platinum mining companies operating in Zimbabwe including local units of Anglo American Platinum Ltd. and Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd. have submitted plans to the government to build platinum and base-metal refineries in the southern African country, the Sunday Mail reported, citing Mines Minister Walter Chidakwa.

“They have made a commitment that they will continue to support Zimbabwe and the setting up of refinery is one of the aspirations,” Chidakwa said, according to a report in the Harare-based newspaper. “The road is clear now for us to achieve our dream of adding value to our minerals.”

The country’s producers are being compelled to send their ore to plants in Zimbabwe, according to a Jan. 3 letter to producers, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg News.

As there has been no progress toward building a refinery, “the government is reiterating its resolve to enforce the two-year period window, which ends in 2014, after which exports of raw platinum concentrates will not be permitted,” Secretary for Mines Francis Gudyanga said in the letter. The deadline for submitting the proposals was Dec 17.

Chidakwa said he was unable to comment as he is attending a funeral. Deputy Mines Minister Fred Moyo couldn’t be reached by phone.

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