Minister accuses Minerals Council of stalling progress
Publish date: 15 April 2019
Issue Number: 819
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Category: South Africa
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has accused the Minerals Council SA of fighting against progress as it challenges the 2018 Mining Charter in court. A BusinessLIVE report notes that in his keynote address at the official opening of Sasol's Impumelelo colliery near Secunda on Friday, Mantashe said while the world had recognised the strides SA had made in the mining sector over the past year, the council has chosen to approach the courts to review the charter. 'The Chamber of Mines (as the council was formerly known) never allows stability. There are many among them who thrive on a crisis,' the Minister said. The completion of the Mining Charter was prioritised under the leadership of President Cyril Ramaphosa in order to provide much-needed policy certainty. After extensive consultation, the charter was finalised and gazetted in September 2018. At the time, the industry had said there were a few details to iron out but, in general, it was a charter it could live with. The Minister said SA's reputation was improving, and so he thought it ironic that the council had gone to court. On 27 March, the industry association filed an application for the judicial review and setting aside of certain clauses of the charter. The council said the decision to do so was taken 'very reluctantly' as attempts to reach a compromise with the Minister were ongoing. However, it said it was obliged to launch proceedings because a 180-day window to legally do so was closing.