A look at who is buying Zimbabwe mines


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Landela Mining Ventures – ZMDC assets

Landela has been announced as the winning bidder for “ZMDC Gold Assets and Sandawana Mine” in the Ministry’s report. ZMDC initially put up six gold mines for sale.

Among these are Jena gold mine in Silobela, which has ore capacity of 450 tonnes per day. However, its equipment is old and much of the plant has been stripped by creditors.

Elvington shut down in 2003 after the collapse of one of its main shafts. It has been under care and maintenance since. The mine used to produce 45kg per month, and some data has shown it can yield US$2.4 million per month should it fully develop its 21 blocks of mining claims.

Sandawana, the gemstone mine near Mberengwa, sits on at least nine known deposits. According to Landela CEO David Brown, the company is assessing the potential of the mine and will reach a decision “in the next few weeks”.

Landela is on a shopping spree, having recently taken over Metallon’s Shamva and Mazowe mines, Bindura Nickel Corporation and Freda Rebecca Mine. It is also the 50% JV partner in Great Dyke Investments, which is developing the Darwendale platinum project.

Sakunda Holdings – Mbungu coal bed methane (CBM) concession

Sakunda, the commodities company linked to Kuda Tagwirei, was awarded Special Grant 5755 near Lupane to prospect for gas. This is an area covering 333 160 hectares. Sakunda had already been awarded a grant to explore for coalbed methane at two locations there in 2015, in partnership with ZMDC. This was after Lupane Gas, a unit of IDC, had failed to make progress on exploration.

CBM is a form of natural gas extracted from coalbeds.

Tumagole – Gwayi CBM Concession

Tumagole, a South African company, has been awarded rights to Special Grant 5754, measuring 304 705ha for coalbed methane exploration.

The company, headed by Thapelo Tshepe, has no known record in resources. In 2019, the company claimed it would invest R55 billion into the Lupane project.

Tumagole officials, led by South African ambassador to Zimbabwe Mphakama Mbete, paid a courtesy call on Vice President Constantino Chiwenga in 2019. At that meeting, Tshepe claimed Tumagole had secured funding commitments from South African banks and technical support from “big companies like Sasol”.

The company, he said, was only waiting for “binding contracts” from Zimbabwe to get these moving.

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The Insider

The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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