ZELA launches study findings on property and mining rights

Moses Ziyambi

The Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA) yesterday launched the Property and Mining Rights Research findings which provide an analysis for the regulatory regime of one of the most critical areas of the country’s economy.

The study was conducted under the Strengthening Extractive and Natural Resources Sector Transparency and Accountability through Community Action and Parliamentary Oversight in Zimbabwe (STACAP) project.

It contains some recommendations with regards to such issues as a stand-alone investment legislation for the mining sector for the purpose of establishing an enabling normative framework to ensure that mining sector investments benefit the investor, communities and the state.

“We are very pleased to have been able to analyze the protection of property and mining rights in Zimbabwe. In this study, we sought to identify and assess the legal and policy framework on property rights and mining investment in Zimbabwe including providing appropriate recommendations to promote security of tenure,” said ZELA deputy director Shamiso Mtisi in a pre-launch press release.

The organisation called for policy certainty in the extractive sector so as to ensure greater stability which attracts sustainable investment.

“One of the biggest obstacles to investment opportunities in Zimbabwe is the constantly shifting normative framework. There is no stability in the legislative environment. A good example is the use of US$ in Zimbabwean domestic transactions and the retention policy for exporters.

“The promulgation of the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Act is certainly an important first step in the rebuilding process as the Act provides for protection of investments, property rights and equal treatment of investors. It should also be matched by stable and predictable fiscal policy and legislative provision. In the local context we must also then add adherence to court orders, political stability and ultimately surrender to the precepts of the 2013 Constitution,” the organisation said.

The STACAP project goal is to strengthen parliamentary, civil society and community capacity to monitor and play an oversight role over executive actions for accountable and democratic social and economic development through the extractive and natural resources lens.