Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 20 August 2010 – Amendments to the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) could be in force as early as the third quarter of next year, according to Sandile Nogxina, director-general of the mineral resources department (DMR).
Speaking to Miningmx’s weekly podcast, Nogxina said he had presented the proposed amendments to the portfolio committee on mining earlier this week, and the committee had agreed to ‘expedite’ the progress of the amendments.
“The portfolio committee chairman Fred Gona was very sympathetic to stepping up this process,” said Nogxina. “They now know what they have to accept. The chairperson will work very closely with us to expedite it.”
Public hearings on the proposed amendments were due by the beginning of 2011. “We will push parliament on this matter,” said Nogxina. “Amendments could be through by the end of the second quarter.”
One area of the MPRDA that will be amended is whether companies have to make multiple applications for associated minerals.
This is the controversy in which Lonmin found it had not applied to sell base metals, even though it had a mining right to sell platinum group metals, Miningmx explains. Geologically, the two types of metals frequently occur together.
Nogxina indicated there may be a return to the minerals law of 1991, the antecedent of the MPRDA, which allowed for “undivided shareholding”. This would imply the ability to sell metals that occurred together.