The Sunday News
LEADING diversified natural resources producer, Eurasian Resources Group Africa has started mobilising additional contractors and staff to undertake work on its Bokai platinum project in the lower region of the Great Dyke near Shurugwi.
The developments come after the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development last month informed the company that its platinum mining concessions could be seized because no progress has been made in developing them.
The Government has argued that the concessions may be taken over under the ‘use-it/lose-it principle’ which allows the State to repossess idle mining claims. However, the company said last week that it has initiated plans to start operations following discussions with authorities and a recent ministerial visit to the site.
Early geological studies indicate that Bokai could yield an output of up to 300 kilo tonnes per month (ktpm) with an adequate resource base to support a 20-year life of mine.
“The technical work completed on Bokai has returned positive results and we are optimistic about the asset’s resource potential. We have started hiring and mobilising additional contractors and staff to undertake the necessary works required to shift the project into its next phase of development,” ERG acting chief executive officer Mr Sergei Verbitckii.
The company noted that it shared the Government’s goal of promoting and expanding the country’s mining sector, driving employment and growing the local economy.
“To date ERG Africa has invested more than US$100 million in exploration works and infrastructure development on the Bokai project. The additional works have been commissioned and will contribute to the macro-economic growth of the region.”
The Government has been on a drive to ramp mining production after setting a target to achieve a massive $12 billion industry by 2030. To achieve the feet, Government has been monitoring production of major mines with particular emphasis on increasing production. Companies holding unused mining concessions have had their mining claims pinned for repossession. Zimbabwe has the world’s third-biggest platinum group metal reserves, but has some of the earmarked projects are still to get off the feet.
The Bokai assets were taken from Anglo American Platinum Ltd, which does operate a mine in Zimbabwe, more than a decade ago and handed to Central African Mining and Exploration Co. The company was bought by Eurasian Natural Resources Co. which later became Eurasian Resources Group.