Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a Chinese company, Tshingshong which will allow the company to operate various mining concessions including coal and iron ore.
The initial phase of the investment is worth US$2 million.
Addressing journalists at the signing ceremony that was attended by President Emmerson Mnangagwa as well as other senior government officials, Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando said the company was going to employ 30 000 people.
“We have just signed this Memorandum of Understanding with Tshingshang Group which in fact is an augmentum to the MOU which was signed last year.
“The initial phase is $2 billion. The second phase, we are looking at between 5 to 10 billion USD. Employment figures, the chairman indicated 20 000 and we are looking at about at least 10 000 on the other activity so we are looking at 30 000,” Chitando said.
Chitando said Government committed to providing resources to Tshingshang in an MOU that was initially signed last year.
“In terms of a MOU signed last year around June , the Government of Zimbabwe committed to providing resources to Tshingshang in the form of chrome resources, Nickel resources, iron ore resources and coal resources. Since then, they have started resource evaluation in the Mvuma and their conclusions in terms of the Nickel concessions.
The whole idea being the establishment of a 2 million tonnes steel facility in the Mvuma area.
Initially 1 million tonnes being cabon steel and the second phase 1million tonnes being stainless steel,” he said.
He said the MOU expands the scope of the original MOU.
“The MOU signed today expands the scope of the original MoU. The initial MOU was an area which is about 450 000 tonnes but at the moment it is targeting a production of 1 million which means the consumption of Mvuma and for export.
“Secondly the initial MOU targeted the production of coal specific for the Stainless Steel operation in the Mvuma area but now it is targeting as well as coke for export.
“In addition to the conversation of coke and coal, the MOU also provides for the research for Tshingshang to produce chemicals from part of the coal which will be produced in Hwange,” he said.
Chitando said Tshingshang would also provide for the construction of a 600 megawatt power plant.
“The MOU provides for the construction of a 600 megawatt power plant in two phases initially 300 megawatts and the second phase another 300 megawatts. The MOU also includes the provision of lithium concessions on which Tshingshang will undertake mining of lithium and also value edition.
“The MOU also includes Tshingshang looking into the possibility of working with government and other investors in exploring the upgrading of the railway line and also establishment of a dedicated port along the coast,” Chitando said.