US$12 billion mining industry, Zim launches responsible mining initiative

EnviroPress Reporter

As Zimbabwe edges closer to its target deadline of achieving a US$12 billion mining industry by year 2025, President Emmerson Mnangagwa has launched a nationwide responsible mining initiative to bring sanity and compliance into the mining sector while arresting mineral leakages.

Though the commencement dates for the audit have not been preempted, the mining audit will target all the country’s 10 provinces and will rope in various government ministries and departments among them the ministries of Mines, Lands, Environment and Local Government.

President Mnangagwa said the initiative represents an essential milestone in the journey towards a sustainable US$12 billion mining industry and underscored that the programme is an indispensable undertaking of the second Republic’s quest to exercise good stewardship of the country’s natural resources.

“To enhance greater compliance, a Responsible Mining Audit will be conducted countrywide, covering the entire mining sector value chain including both small scale and large scale mines.

“The Audit, will establish a framework that promotes responsible mining practices, while guaranteeing the well-being of communities and environments where mining activities are taking place.

“The exercise will be conducted by various Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies,” said President Mnangagwa.

President Mnangagwa said the audit teams will conduct thorough investigations on activities within the various mining entities, with the objective of highlighting challenges and proffering recommendations towards the overall improvement of the mining sector.

Attention will be accorded to adherence to aspects related to environmental management, immigration tax, labour relations and provisions of the Mines and Minerals Act, among others, in accordance with the laws targeting all mining entities.

“Together, we must embrace methods that minimise harm and maximise benefits for investors and the generality of the people of Zimbabwe.

“In line with this, assessments must include potential risks associated with each project, before commencement and also incorporate detailed plans for site reclamation upon closure of the mine,” he said.

Poorly regulated mining activities in Zimbabwe have been blamed for causing extensive environmental destruction, creating artificial hills and open pits as well as promoting massive soil erosion, contaminating water sources and land with dangerous chemicals making them unusable for productive purposes.

This project was made possible through a partnership with the Southern Africa Trust. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent that of the Trust or its associates.