Zuma to resuscitate state-owned mining bill this year

President Jacob Zuma

PARTICIPATION of the South African state in its mining industry would be strengthened with a bill that would create a standalone government-owned mining company referred to by President Jacob Zuma as the Mining Company of South Africa bill.

Speaking in his State of the Nation Address (SOMA) in parliament today, Zuma said the bill would be presented to cabinet and parliament later this year.

The bill refers to the State Owned Mining Company (SOMCO) bill which was floated during the period Ngoako Ramatlhodi was the country’s mines minister.

Ramatlhodi said in an address in July 2014, that SOMCO was “… one of the critical instruments of the democratic developmental state” that would lead to “… greater participation by the state in the mainstream economy”. No further details of the proposed bill were provided by Zuma.

Currently, the government has involvement in mining through a number of different entities including the African Exploration & Mining Finance Company (AEMFC), a company held in the Central Energy Fund but which is to be transferred to the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR).

Commenting on other mining-related issues, Zuma said he trusted discussions between the government and the mining industry regarding the Mining Charter would “… yield a result so that the process could be finalised”.

“The charter seeks to recognise the internationally accepted right of the state to exercise sovereignity over all mineral and petroleum resources in the Republic,” said Zuma.

“It is also aimed at helping the country to de-racialise the ownership of the mining industry which will help to ensure the stability of the industry,” he said.

Zuma also anticipated little further delay in the finalisation of amendments to the Minerals & Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) which, he said, had been sent back to parliament so that “… issues related to public consultation undertaken by the provincial legislature can be addressed”.

“We trust that it shall be a processed and returned and finalised without much delay so that concerns relating to uncertainty raised by business can be resolved,” he said.


  1. Alexkor is also a state owned mining company.

    AEFMC is actively mining its own operations especially in coal supplying ESKOM, I wondeer if the president knows about this? or is Oakbay the State owned Mining Company.

          • And I don’t need you…We are doing much better outside of South Africa than we ever did working with thugs…I remind you of my prediction, by the end of 2021 there will not be a gold mining industry is SA and the platinum mines will consist of Mogalakwena pit only… You have basically already killed the goose that lays the golden eggs… One day you will realize that you do need foreign capital, even if it is white, but then it will be too late… Those deep reserves will never be mined…

  2. It should really be called the Government Owned Mining company (GOMCO). If there was ever any doubt, this once again proves that this President has absolutely NO understanding of the difference between Government and State… I would propose that it is rather called ZOMCO, (Zupta Owned Mining Company) although my first proposal would also suffice for Gupta Owned Mining Company… Problem is, ther will not be any mining industry left to own…

  3. Obviously this opens the door for the guptas to gain another foothold in the mining industry with zuma and his acolytes to enrich themselves

  4. Obviously this opens the door for more optimum colliery type takeovers by the guptas and aided by the gupta appointed zwane – the benefit must of course reach the extended zuma gang plus their croniea all waiting in typical african style to benefit financially without having to work ( it is rather amusing to realise that trump is following the very well established african model of using political office to advance his own enrichment – cf mugabe, zuma, et al)

  5. The act has been in the pipeline for some time – the AEMFC needs to move out from under the Central Energy Fund (Department of Energy) to the DMR, which is its line ministry. An act is required to do this. There is of course also Alexcor, and the Limpopo Provinces’ Corridor Mining. Interestingly PAMDC, the SA/Zam/Zim owned company had as its contact address AEMFC emails – it is in dispute with Aquila. Quite how the DMR can be player and referee is beyond me. Don’t know if the act will try and consolidate all of these interest – might just be the admin change for AEMFC making the act a bit of molehill rather than a mountain.