Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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Zim taking foreign owned mines

Zim taking foreign-owned mines

Mar 28, 2011 1:52 PM | By Sapa-AFP

All foreign-owned mining companies in Zimbabwe will be required to sell 
majority stakes to locals within six months, under new regulations.

The controversial Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act issued last 
year, required all foreign firms valued at more than $500, 000 to sell 51 
percent stakes to locals.

The new rules published without warning on Monday expand the law to include 
all mining companies valued at more than one dollar.

“A controlling interest, or the 51 percent of the shares or interest which 
in terms of the Act is required to be held by indigenous Zimbabweans in 
non-indigenous mining business,” the new law said in the government gazette.

Companies are expected to complete their sale plans by May 9 and 
transactions must be finalised by September 25, according to the gazette.

“It’s very messy and it is a harsher approach to the mining sector,” 
economist John Robertson told AFP.

“It is politically inspired. The disposal of 51 percent of the shares in 
mining companies to indigenous Zimbabweans will apply to all companies with 
a net asset value of more than one US dollar,” said Robertson.

The law is strongly supported by President Robert Mugabe and has created 
tensions within the unity government, with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai 
charging that it will discourage investment.

Shares of foreign mining companies, including London-listed Aquarius 
Platinum and Australian-listed Zimbabwe Platinum Mines, have plunged due to 
uncertainty around the law since its original release one year ago.

Zimbabwe has been working to attract investors after a decade of political 
turmoil which has seen the collapse of its economy.


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