Karo empowers community

29 Jul, 2018 - 00:07 0 Views

The Sunday Mail

Karo Zimbabwe Holdings has allocated a 15 percent equity in each of its three units to workers and communities where the firm will be operating, its shareholding structure reveals.

Karo Mining Holdings signed a $4,2 billion integrated mining deal with the Zimbabwean Government in March this year.

This include a platinum mine in Mhondoro-Ngezi, west of Harare.

The project consists of refineries of base and precious metals, chrome and coal mines and a power plant. It is expected to generate at least 15 000 direct and 75 000 indirect jobs.

Under the agreement, Karo Zimbabwe Holdings, which is 100 percent owned by Cyprus-based Karo Mining Holdings, will own 50 percent shareholding of the platinum mining firm, Karo Platinum, while the remainder will be held by the Government.

In three other units — Karo Refining, Karo Power Generation and Karo Coal Mines — Karo Zimbabwe will own 75 percent in each of the subsidiaries while 15 percent will be held by the workers and the communities and 10 percent by the Government.

President Mnangagwa officially launched the project in Ngezi last Tuesday, describing it as a landmark that is set to change Zimbabwe’s mining sector.

Karo Mining Holdings chairman, Mr Loucas Pouroulis said the project will be one of the largest ever made in Zimbabwe and it will open gateway for further investments.

The mining industry is the country’s largest foreign currency earner with export receipts accounting for about 65 percent of total exports. Zimbabwe holds the country’s largest platinum and chrome deposits along the Great Dyke, after South Africa.

With an expected lifespan of 40 years, Karo expects first platinum output in 2020 and gradually ramp up production to 1,4 million tonnes when all four open pits become operational.

The refineries will have the capacity to refine two million ounces of platinum per annum and provide an additional 600 000 tonnes for tool refining. The solar power plant will generate about 300 megawatts and a partner has been identified to implement the project. Karo Coal Mines will identify prospective coal areas where it intends to establish a metallurgical coal facility.

Recently, Tharisa, a Johannesburg and London listed company acquired a 26,8 percent shareholding in Karo Mining Holdings for $4,5 million. Tharisa has also agreed to provide a $8 million debt facility to Karo Platinum for the initial geological exploration and sampling work to determine a compliant resource.

Tharisa will manage the exploration and oversee the subsequent bankable feasibility study.

Speaking to journalists after the launch of the project, Tharisa chief operations officer Ms Michelle Taylor said Karo would pursue various funding options of the projects.

Karo Holdings intends to apply for National Project Status and for the projects to be contained within a Special Economic Zone. This will provide the projects with enhanced economics through concessions granted by the Zimbabwe Government.

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