Harare, Zimbabwe —MININGREVIEW.COM — 26 January 2012 – The Zimbabwean government is proposing hefty registration, rental and licence fees for mining activities in the country “’ a move that has already caused widespread concern in the mining sector.

Mines and mining development permanent secretary Prince Mupazviriho confirmed here that the new fees would be announced soon, but declined to divulge details. “We are certainly working on that but nothing has been approved yet or gazetted,” Mupazviriho said.

However, allAfrica.com reports that according a draft schedule seen by Harare daily “The Herald,” the application fees for an ordinary prospectors licence for platinum will rise from US$150 to US$500,000 while the registration fee will be US$2.5 million, up from US$300.

The fees are paid once off and non-refundable.

Ground rentals per annum will rise from US$10 per five claims to US$1,000 per hectare.
For diamonds, the registration fee will remain at US$1 million although a once off and non-refundable registration fee of US$5 million will be introduced if the proposals are approved.
The licence to cut and polish diamonds will rise to US$100,000 from US$20,000 while a gold buying licence will double from US$2,500 to US$5,000.

A custom milling licence will rise to US$8,000 from US$2,000 while for toll smelters it will rise to US$5,000, and a person wishing to be registered as a prospector will have to pay US$5,000 per year, up from the US$100.

An ordinary prospecting licence will attract US$500 per mining district, up from the US$100 for the whole country that used to be charged.

The application fee for coal and coal bed methane gas, mineral oils, natural gas and nuclear energy mineral resource will attract a once-off non-refundable application fee of US$100,000, up from US$5,000, while an application for chrome prospecting will be pegged at US$500 from US$100.

Chairman of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy Edward Chindori-Chininga said the increases would not be in the mining sector’s interests if they were to be gazetted.

He said that licence fees should not be used as a revenue-generating instrument but an enabling instrument.