The Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe, MMCZ says miners can expect improvements in the mining sector as the mines ministry is crafting new policies for chrome, coal bed methane and coking coal. The policies are expected to be complete by February next year.
MMCZ General Manager Tongai Muzenda said the current state of affairs in the chrome sector has seen the demise of traditional players leaving small scale chrome miners at the mercy of unscrupulous buyers.
“We have heard bad stories whereby some people want to pay USD$20 for a tonne of chrome. That is criminal and evil to do.
Someone spends hours and hours digging, you know mining chrome is not easy especially following a thin seam. I think a fair price should not be less than USD$70”, said Muzenda.
The MMCZ boss also highlighted that they are working on plans to construct small chrome furnaces along the Great Dyke to benefit small-scale chrome miners.
“There were only two chrome players here, Zim Alloys and Zimasco. We do not need huge furnaces like in the days of old. We can use small, 5MVA sometimes 7MVA which are almost mobile, so that’s what we want to do to help our small scale miners.
“We will fund it because we have got a scheme which was announced by Prof. Mthuli Ncube sometime last year and we want to try and operationalize it”, he said.
Players in the chrome sector have in recent weeks said they are struggling because of foreign players’ dominance in the industry and pricing challenges as some third parties are offering way below the expected prices.