Zimbabwe's cash strapped government is now threatening to force mining firms to hand over a 51% stake without paying for the proper value as stipulated by the country's controversial indigenization law.
Economic analysts say this big stick approach will scare away the much-needed investment as the drive now increasingly resembles the chaotic and ofter violent land reform exercise that started in 2000.
Sources say the hardline approach is being adopted after South Africa’s Impala Platinum demanded that Zimbabwe pay an estimated $375 million before it can transfer a 51% stake that the government says it has acquired.
Mines Minister Obert Mpofu and Indigenization Minister Savior Kasukuwere of the President Robert Mugabe's former ruling ZANU-PF are said to be toughening their stance as their party swings into election mode.
Mpofu told VOA's Blessing Zulu that those who do not transfer the shares risk their firms being taken over by the government.
But deputy justice minister and Senator Obert Gutu of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change formation says Harare must pay the share value as per law.