HomePoliticsAnjin not remitting diamond proceeds: Biti

Anjin not remitting diamond proceeds: Biti

Anjin is heavily involved in the extraction of diamonds in Chiadzwa in a controversial joint venture with the Zimbabwe Defence Forces.

Presenting his state of the economy report for March 2012 in Harare yesterday, Biti charged that government had not received anything meaningful  from Anjin.

“We are worried about that,” said Biti. “We are also deeply concerned that the ZMDC (Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation), which is supposed to be government’s representative in Anjin, is actually not a shareholder in Anjin, but some other body which we do not know. We, in the Ministry of Finance, now fear that there may be a parallel government where these monies may be going and not coming to us.”

Biti said Anjin should be contributing at least six to seven times what it is currently doing.

He said in terms of Section 103 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, the revenues of government must go into the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF).

He blamed the underperformance of revenue collected to poor contribution by diamond mining firms, lamenting that diamond revenues of only US$30,5 million had been remitted to the fiscus between January and March 2012,  against a target of US$122,5 million.

“We have not been able to meet our revenue targets and the key cause of the shortfall is the non-performance of our diamond revenues,”said Biti.

Revenue collections for March 2012 amounted to US$287,9 million against a target of US$320,2 million, giving rise to a US$32,4 million shortfall, which Biti said arose mostly owing to underperformance of diamond proceeds.

He said total diamond exports for January to March 2012 were US$214 million, comprising mainly Mbada Diamonds, which exported US$87,6 million, Marange Resources US$11,7 million, Anjin Investments US$72,3 million, Diamond Mining Corporation US$38,9 million and Murowa Diamonds US$5,7 million.

Only US$30,5 million had accrued to government.

Biti also dismissed assertions that the underperformance of diamond exports was due to sanctions.

“The sanctions argument doesn’t sell,” he said. “Diamond exports for the first three months have been US$214 million, so if exports were being affected by sanctions that would affect prices and not revenues as this would affect price per carat, not production. Perhaps, we would be saying that instead of US$214 million we should have received US$500 million.”

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