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Implats threatens to shutdown Mimosa over export levy

South Africa’s Impala Platinum (Implats) says it will be forced to shut down its Mimosa mine in Zimbabwe if government goes ahead with plans to implement a 15 percent levy on raw platinum exports.

The southern African nation proposed the levy 2013 in a bid to push platinum miners operating in the country to establish smelting and refining facilities locally.

The tax was supposed to come into effect in January 2015 but was pushed to 2018 to allow the miners time to set up the facilities.

“It is crunch time as we would rather park the resource than post losses,” said Gerhard Potgeiter, group executive for growth projects at Implats.

“This is a clear stance between ourselves and Sibanye-Stillwater,” he said.

The two companies have a 50 percent share each of Mimosa.

Currently, all three platinum miners which operate in Zimbabwe – Anglo American Platinum (Amplats)’s Unki Mine, the Impala Platinum owned Zimplats and Mimosa Mine, send their matte for refining to South Africa.

Implats chief executive Nico Muller said the company would give government time to make a decision.

“There are certain realities that we need to face as businessmen. We either make money or not. If we are only making money to pay taxes, then that is not going to work. But we want to give them time to change decision on export levy.” – The Source

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