JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Africa’s true scale of business opportunities, particularly those in South Africa’s rich natural resources sector, were underexplored, Vedanta Resources chairperson Anil Agarwal outlined here during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit on Friday.
The head of the Indian natural resources company, with interests in oil and gas, zinc-lead-silver, copper, iron-ore, aluminium and commercial energy, was part of the delegation accompanying Modi, and announced that Vedanta would be signing two memorandums of understanding with South African companies.
He also pledged to continue to invest in what he termed “our greenfield project” at Gamsberg, in the Northern Cape, which hosts one of the world’s largest undeveloped zinc sulphide deposits, with some 160-million tonnes of defined ore resources.
Last year Vedanta injected $400-million into the Gamsberg zinc project at Black Mountain Mining (BMM), where it has significantly extended the reserves of the Southern African zinc assets it bought from a disinvesting Anglo American five years ago, achieving full payback of the original investment well ahead of the deal’s key Gamsberg asset coming into play.
Since 2004, the London-listed company has invested more than $4-billion in Africa, where it mines copper in Zambia, produces zinc and lead concentrate at BMM and zinc metal at Skorpion Zinc in Namibia.
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