African National
Congress MP
Faith Bikani
Johannesburg, South Africa — 04 July 2012 – A member of the parliamentary portfolio committee on mineral resources has poured cold water on expectations that amendments to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) would be passed by the legislative assembly before the end of 2012.

Miningmx reports that African National Congress (ANC) MP Faith Bikani also warned that the revised mining charter of 2010 shouldn’t be regarded as a finished product.

Speaking at the latest Mining for Change seminar here, she said mining legislation wouldn’t be ratified prior to the ANC’s elective conference scheduled for December. The ruling party’s policy conference last week had accepted the proposals contained in the State Intervention in the Mining Sector (Sims) document which, among other issues, called for a resource rent tax, a mining super ministry, as well as the classification of strategic minerals.

These proposals are to be discussed by ANC branches and formulated as policy proposals for the December conference in Mangaung.

Bikani said parliament was still conducting public hearings on the charter and that it wouldn’t be bound by a deadline.  “It is still being refined and it still needs more input,” she stated. “We would rather take our time than rushing towards a policy document that is not benefitting our future.”

Minister of mineral resources Susan Shabangu, told Miningmx in May that the proposed amendments to the MPRDA would be submitted to cabinet in July at the latest, with the subsequent parliamentary process to be completed before year-end. “We’ll go on to do our work as government,” Shabangu said at the time. “We are confident we won’t see many changes.”

Bikani, however, said parliament would probably only be able to ratify changes to the MPRDA in 2013. Shabangu first announced the revision of the act in the third quarter of 2010, a process that was initially scheduled for completion in 2011.

Source: Miningmx. For more information, click here.