Zimbabwe Suspends Platinum Mine’s Access to Banking Services

Zimplats Ngezi Plant

Zimbabwe Platinum Holdings says it did not break the law following the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s order last week for banks to stop processing exports for the second-largest producer of the metal until it shifts foreign accounts onshore.

Zimplats chief finance officer Mr Patrick Maseva-Shayawabaya said in a statement yesterday that the suspension of banking services for the company was “unfortunate”.

The company said the existence and operation of Zimplats’ offshore bank accounts is contained in the terms of an agreement between the company and the Government.

“The existence and operation of the offshore bank accounts is in terms of the Mining Agreement between the company and the Government of Zimbabwe.

“The directive further prohibited the company’s bankers from facilitating Zimplats’ international transactions as well the processing of export documentation until the company is in compliance with the directive.

“The directive is most unfortunate because Zimplats understands and fully embraces the policy objectives of the directive and will comply with it.

“The company is already paying 75 percent of its total expenditure through the Zimbabwean banking system with the balance relating mainly to the servicing of offshore loans, which were raised with the knowledge, support, and approval of the RBZ,” he said.

Meanwhile, Zimplats has said it is working with the authorities to regularise the issue.

“Management recently discussed this matter with the RBZ and believed that the voluntary measures instituted by the company adequately addressed the concerns of the authorities.

“Management is working closely with the RBZ to ensure that the localisation of the offshore bank accounts is implemented smoothly and that the provisions of the company’s agreements including its offshore loans, are honoured,” said Mr Maseva-Shayawabaya.