Mining Indaba 2018 – Day three round-up

Day three of the Mining Indaba 2018 did not disappoint those in attendance at Africa’s biggest mining event. Here is a round-up of the penultimate day of the global mining community gathering in Cape Town.


Legendary mining executive pleads for greater local beneficiation in DRC

Members of the gathered global mining industry fell silent as Robert Friedland, billionaire founder of Ivanhoe Mines, gave an address on the topic of a potential new mining code in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The government of the resource-rich nation recently proposed a new mining code (which still needs to be signed off by President Joseph Kabila) that would see royalties on copper, cobalt and gold significantly rise.

Friedland is developing a giant copper mine in DRC, but said he was not opposed to a new code granted that increased royalties and taxes would bring greater economic benefits to local people.

“I don’t mind paying … as long as that royalty goes to develop, help and empower local people,” he said. “I want the accounting of that money to be transparent and absolutely help people around the mines.

“I am not concerned about the level of taxation, that’s not the fundamental issue. The issue is the mining industry needs stability and we absolutely need transparency.”


Thor Explorations triumphs at annual investment battlefield competition

 24 junior mining companies went head-to-head over the first three days of the Mining Indaba in the annual investment battlefield competition, which aims to identify the best emerging small-cap companies to watching investors.

The selected companies each made a 5-minute pitch of their project to a panel of judges, who in turn provided 10 minutes of live feedback. Companies were spread across commodity focused categories including precious metals, bulk and base metals and battery minerals.

After much deliberation and consultation amongst the judges, it was announced that Thor Explorations were the winners of the competition for its Segilola Gold project in Nigeria.

The TSX-V listed explorer will receive a free exhibition stand at Mining Indaba 2019 along with a free 10-minute speaking slot at next years event, courtesy of the indaba’s organisers.


Resources sector can drive the economy, says Zimbabwe’s mines minister

Zimbabwe’s mines minster Winston Chitando pointed to the huge potential of the mineral resources sector to drive the national economy going into the future.

Speaking at the Mining Indaba, the minister said that the sector should focus on extracting the country’s reserves of gold, diamonds and particularly lithium.

“The country hosts some of the world’s largest lithium deposits,” he said, before citing Bikita Minerals in Zimbabwe’s Masvingo province and the Arcadia Lithium project in Goromonzi along with other lithium projects.

Lithium is a crucial element in the batteries powering electric vehicles, an industry which has been projected to experience major growth going in to the next decade.

Chitando also discussed Zimbabwe’s policies regarding foreign ownership in mining projects, with foreign companies currently limited to 49% stakes in projects.

“Progressive policy reviews across the entire economy are ongoing. There is continuous review and improvement of ease of doing business,” he said.