President Cyril Ramaphosa has expressed confidence in a US $400 million Gamsberg Zinc Mine investment, adding that the mine could improve employment prospects.
Speaking at the opening of the mine located near Aggeneys in the province on Thursday, 28 February 2019, Ramaphosa said that Vedanta Resources Limited’s investment has heeded South Africa’s call at the country’s inaugural investment conference in October 2018 calling for such investments. He expressed that it was a step in the right direction towards changing the fortunes of the country’s underdeveloped Northern Cape Province.
“We are here to thank Vedanta for the enthusiasm with which you have embraced our ambitious investment drive.
“It is gratifying to see the commitments made at the investment conference taking form and shape across our country,” the president said.
He thanked the company for investing in one of the most sparsely populated provinces in the country, which contributes only 2% to South Africa’s GDP and has an expanded unemployment rate of around 39% as opposed to the national average of 27%.
“Mining offers an opportunity to fundamentally change this,” Ramaphosa said of the mineral rich province that has manganese, iron ore and diamonds underneath its belly.
“Yet, this province remains underdeveloped,” he said, adding that mining in the area could greatly improve employment prospects in the province by investing in mineral beneficiation.