President Cyril Ramaphosa will, on Thursday, 28 February 2019, officially open Vedanta Zinc International’s Gamsberg Mine near Aggeneys in the Northern Cape.
Aggeneys is a mining centre located between Springbok and Pofadder in South Africa’s largest and most sparsely populated province.
Vedanta Resources Limited is a globally diversified natural resources company, the largest in India and 6th largest in the world. The new mine is part of Vedanta’s Black Mountain Mining (BMM) operations and is located about 30km from BMM’s base at Aggeneys.
Gamsberg will exploit one of the largest known, undeveloped zinc ore bodies in the world and will comprise an open pit mine and a dedicated processing plant.
In the context of improved trade relations between South Africa and India and on the back of South Africa’s inaugural investment conference, President Ramaphosa said during the Business Forum on the occasion of South Africa’s State Visit to India “South Africa recognises and appreciates Vedanta Resources’ investment of $1.6bn (R21.8bn) in the Gamsberg Zinc mine in the Northern Cape, of which [US]$400million has already been spent. This investment by Vedanta has triggered a new wave of industrial and economic development in our country”.
The first phase of the zinc mine, which has an estimated lifespan of over 13 years, is an investment of US$400 million, (over R5.5bn), which employed more than 3 000 people at the height of construction.
Around 800 – 850 people will be employed permanently, once Gamsberg is in production.
A further US$ 350 to 400 million investment is planned for the second phase as part of a total investment plan, including future projects, estimated at US$800 million.
The new Vedanta venture constitutes the basis for an economic node that will benefit the Northern Cape Province as a whole.
The company has invested over R44 million on skills development, education, health and enterprise development and municipal infrastructure support projects in the area. Vedanta also supports and prioritises local procurement, creating positive spinoffs for small and medium enterprises in the area.
President Ramaphosa will be joined at the opening by Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe and Northern Cape Premier Sylvia Lucas.
Office of the President of South Africa