Govt gives ultimatum to miners over unpaid fees

By ZBC Reporter
ZIMBABWE has given holders of mining concessions up to the end of April to pay $11 million in outstanding annual fees or risk losing their licenses, the Mines and Mining Development minister, Winston Chitando said on Tuesday.
Mining is the biggest earner of foreign exchange in the country. Zimbabwe holds the second-largest known reserves of platinum and large deposits of lithium, gold and chrome.
Mines Minister Winston Chitando, who has previously accused some companies of holding mining concessions for speculative purposes, said the government was owed at least 200 million Zimbabwe dollar (US$11 million) in annual fees as of January 30.
Under Zimbabwe’s laws, companies have to pay an annual fee to keep their concessions.
“The 200 million (Zimbabwe dollar) relates to that mining title where the owners or holders have not been observing or are in arrears as far as payment of the mining title is concerned,” Chitando told reporters during a post-cabinet briefing.
He did not give any details on which mines or companies were in arrears.
The Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Senator Monica Mutsvangwa said that “those who owe money are being given until April 30 to pay up, failing which the mining title will be lost”.