JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – South Africa must begin to take the mining industry seriously and consult on the issues, former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel said on Wednesday.
In a keynote address to the Joburg Indaba, Manuel pointed out that foreign direct investment into South Africa had fallen to a fraction of what it was and from being number one in gold in the world to seventh position.
“It’s not a happy place to be and if we don’t have discussions we will be betraying future generations,” he said.
Infrastructure challenges remain with the country not knowing how big the energy crisis is, as mining output is so low, and transport costs remain an issue.
The metrics for iron-ore and coal have changed in a short space of time and there are ongoing environmental issues long after the mines have closed, such as acid mine drainage.
Corruption is a fundamentally important issue with indications that “some people don’t get though the door unless they’ve paid”.
South Africa needs to talk about this and not pretend that it does not exist.
The Mining Phakisa has flattered to deceive and Mining Charter Three needs urgent clarification, he held.
“The industry needs a voice and we must begin to take this industry seriously and consult on the issues,” the former Finance Minister told the conference attended by Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online.