Story by Stanley James, Business Editor
ZIMBABWE has banned exports of unbeneficiated base minerals in a move aimed at ensuring the maximum value of earnings.
Under the arrangement, any base metal that has not undergone processing within the country will not be exported.
Most of the base metals under the latest regulations include coal, concentrates, slags, tailings, coke and iron, and chrome.
Base metals also include lithium, tantalite, manganese, copper, cobalt, tin and asbestos.
It also implies that no unbeneficiated base minerals shall be exported from Zimbabwe to another country without a written permit by the Minister of Mines and Mining Development.
Under a statutory instrument gleaned by the ZBC News this Friday, those found exporting unprocessed raw base minerals will either be fined in a manner exceeding level nine or twice the value of the base mineral or imprisoned for two years.
The offenders may even be sentenced to both a fine and imprisonment.
The move is being made when Zimbabwe is forging ahead with ensuring that the mining sector plays an important role in economic development.
Given instances of alleged under-declaration of revenues by some miners, the government is also seeing it fit to focus on the processing of mineral commodities to get real value on earnings.
With the nation boasting over 40 mineral deposits, the mineral revenue potential of the economy continues to rise due to firming global commodity prices.
Already mining activities are poised to become a US$12 billion industry this year due to new projects.
The resource extractive sector though capital intensive is emerging as one of the key economic drivers in terms of export earnings.