South African-based Impala Platinum Holdings has engaging the Zimbabwean government on meeting indigenization or black empowerment requirements following the government’s rejection of its offer to put a 25 percent equity stake in the hands of black Zimbabwean investors while adding an equivalent 26 percent stake in so-called social credits.
Busi Chindove, spokeswoman for Zimbabwe Platinum Holdings or Zimplats, an Impala unit, said the discussions are expected to yield positive results. But she declined to provide more details, in particular to comment on whether Impala will revise its proposal to comply with indigenization rules. Impala is said to be resisting the transfer of a 51 percent stake.
Company Chairman David Brown said in Impala’s latest annual report that such quotas are problematic because they will restrict future growth opportunities for the industry. Impala is said to be hanging fire on a multi-billion dollar new investment plan for Zimplats.
Indigenization Minister Saviour Kasukuwere could not be reached for comment.
Chindove said the talks with the government should be concluded soon.
Economic commentator Rejoice Ngwenya said the government is likely to harden its position in talks with Impala by demanding Zimplats meet the 51 percent equity target for indigenous or black Zimbabwean investors as set out in legislation and regulations.
Impala had until August 31 to revise proposals rejected by the government.