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ChromeSA has noted the commentary over the last few weeks from a group called Save SA Smelters, which appears to represent individuals and companies negatively impacted by the current state of the South African ferrochrome sector.

STATEMENT FROM CHROMESA

Save SA Smelters’ position focusses on the demand that government immediately implement the proposed chrome ore export tax – and they urge that this tax range between 20% and 80%, depending on the type of chrome ore being exported.

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While ChromeSA sympathises with the difficulties those represented by Save SA Smelters are experiencing, we maintain that destroying another industry (the majority of South Africa’s chrome ore producers) is not a solution to those challenges – neither in the long or even the short term.

ChromeSA remains open to engaging with the ferrochrome industry. However, we are adamant that a chrome ore export tax will be devastating for independent chrome ore producers who rely almost entirely on exports and who employ over 43,000 workers (direct and indirect jobs). Furthermore, we believe a chrome ore export tax will not provide the expected relief to the South African ferrochrome industry. Any relief that is generated through such a tax would, in our view, be short-lived at best.

Our detailed analysis reveals that a chrome ore export tax would, on balance, have a negative impact on South African employment, communities and investment in the mining industry.

ChromeSA believes that there are other measures that government should instead be contemplating in order to improve the South African ferrochrome industry’s sustainable long term outlook. This is particularly true in respect of progressive access to competitively priced electricity inputs.