Zimplats: Platinum export levy ‘not yet in place’

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THE 15 percent levy on raw platinum exports that Zimbabwe dangled early this year in a bid to force platinum mining companies to set up refinery facilities in the country has not yet been implemented, according to Alex Mhembere, the chief executive of Zimplats Holdings, which reported a 125 percent spike in quarterly profit last week. Zimplats operates four mines in Zimbabwe although its biggest, the Bimha mine – which previously had a capacity to mine 2.2 million tons of ore a year – has lost half of its production footprint owing to a partial collapse of the mine last month. The producer, which is 87 percent owned by Impala Platinum, cautioned that output for the 12 months to June next year would be down by 9.5 percent from the target of 270 000 ounces owing to rehabilitation and redevelopment work that now had to be undertaken at Bimha. Production for the year to June was expected to be in line with expectations. Mhembere said the 15 percent levy on unprocessed platinum exports “is supposed to take effect in January 2015”. – Tawanda Karombo

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