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Zimbabwe Bans Chrome Ore Exports

4 August 2021

Zimbabwe has banned the export of chrome ore with immediate effect, the country's Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa told reporters on Tuesday.

Addressing journalists in Harare during a post-cabinet press briefing, Mutsvangwa also said exports of chrome concentrates will be banned from July next year, as there are now enough smelters in the country to ensure that all exports are of ferrochrome ingots. She said:

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A cumulative 22 smelters are now operating and are shared among nine foreign and local companies.

Unless chrome mining capacity is expanded, the smelting operations could soon face the challenge of insufficient feedstock in the form of chrome ore.

In light of the need to safeguard the ferrochrome industry in the above regard, Cabinet approved a total ban on exports of raw chrome ore with immediate effect.

The ban will capacitate current smelters and maximise the value chain to be realised from the country’s abundant resources as spelt out in the National Development Strategy 1.

Cabinet approved the total ban of export of chrome concentrates with effect from July 2022.

Mutsvangwa said the one-year transition was designed to give producers of concentrates time to make suitable arrangements to move up the line for more value addition.

If the 22 smelters cannot cope with expanding production of chrome, then permission can be given for raw chrome exports, but only for a single consignment at a time. Added Mutsvangwa:

Exports of any consignment of raw chrome will only be allowed provided that all the smelters are not in a position to take up and utilise that particular consignment.

More: The Herald