Speaking at the Minerals Council South Africa’s (formerly the Chamber of Mines of South Africa) Annual General Meeting DMR Minister, Gwede Mantashe reiterated Ministry’s intention to engage with the mining industry, as means to bolster its relationship and rebuild connections.
Manatshe highlighted that the Department of Mineral Resources’ (DMR) has identified four key elements it will be addressing:
- The need to bring certainty in the areas of policy and regulation and thereby hasten legislative frameworks
- Refocus the industry and the DMR on the importance of paying attention to health and safety in the workplace
- To confront the complexities that cloud the granting of mining rights and bedevil the applications for mining licences
- Develop an effective approach to combat illegal mining together with its related criminal activities
Vision 2019 and Vision 2030
“The Departmental Strategic Plan for 2014 to 2019, its vision and mission statements, guide our work as both the regulator and enforcer of compliance in the sector, stated Mantashe.
Vision 2019 states that the DMR wants to build “a globally competitive, sustainable and meaningfully transformed mining and mineral sector”; and Vision 2030 sets the task of being “a leader in the transformation of South Africa through economic growth and sustainable development by 2030”.
“Our mission, on the other hand, is that of “promoting and regulating the mineral and mining sector for transformation, growth and development, and ensuring that all South Africans derive sustainable benefits from the country’s mineral wealth,” explained Mantashe.
Mining Charter and MPRDA
Mantashe stated that it is evident that conflict in the industry around the mining charter and, therefore, failure to have the sector coalesce, contributed to uncertainty and fear among investors.
This has further been exacerbated by delays in finalising the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA).
“In line with the call by President Cyril Ramaphosa, we have intensified our engagements on the Mining Charter,” pointed out Mantashe.
“Alongside the Mining Charter process, is another task team established to develop a coherent vision for a competitive and sustainable industry. Transformation and competitive growth are mutually enhancing,” added Mantashe.
The DMR places importance on individual mines engaging communities and workers to ensure that all stakeholders are part of and appreciate developments in the sector.
This is borne evident through the ten community consultations it has held, in seven provinces it has visited.
Emerging from these consultations is the lack of trust communities have in mining companies.
“The revolt over the land question is gradually creeping into mining,” cautioned Mantashe.
The DMR plans to finalise and gazette the Mining Charter in June 2018, having taken onboard contributions and concerns from stakeholders across South Africa.
“We are pleased that the National Council of Provinces has voted in favour of the amendments on the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment Bill, 2013 (MPRDA),” highlighted Mantashe.
“The Select Committee on Land and Mineral Resources will finalise the mandates and recommend to the National Assembly for further processing of the Bill. We have appealed to Parliament to proceed with speed to finalise the Bill.”