- Zimbabwe has dropped a planned 5% levy on exports of unbeneficiated platinum.
- This will boost local producers, including Sibanye, Impala Platinum and Anglo Platinum.
- They are also making progress with constructing local smelter facilities.
Zimbabwe, which holds the world’s second-largest reserves of platinum group metals after South Africa, suspended the levy in 2020 – but planned to introduce it again this year as a way of forcing platinum producers to boost their local beneficiation.
But with Anglo American Platinum commissioning a smelter facility at its Unki Zimbabwe mine and Zimplats investing in local refinery facilities, local producers have satisfied government’s expectations with some progress, hence the lifting of the levy.
“They wrote to me and gave me good reasons as to why this tax is not a good tax and that it is hurting investments,” that country’s Finance Minister, Mthuli Ncube, said in an interview with state media this week.
“We decided, as a government, to remove or suspend that tax, so it’s no longer applicable and this has been welcomed by the platinum industry,” he explained.
Zimplats (owned by Implats), Unki (operated by Anglo American Platinum) and Mimosa (a joint venture controlled by Sibanye and Implats) ship out a semi-processed matte for final refinery in South Africa.
The lifting of the levy – which comes in the wake of other measures by the treasury allowing miners to pay royalties and a portion of their electricity bills in local currency – is expected to aid the fiscal challenges platinum group metal miners have been facing.