AFTER years of painstaking work advancing Kibo Mining’s flagship project, the integrated Mbeya coal mine and power station, Kibo suddenly found itself in the midst of a mudslinging match between Tanzanian President John Magufuli and gold miner Acacia Mining, which spilled over to other miners operating in Tanzania. There was an immediate wave of panic from other junior miners, who were not sure how they would be affected. Coetzee, who is firmly convinced of the country’s need for Mbeya, wasn’t intimidated. He said there would be new rules to learn and follow, but it would not change the scheduling of the project. In fact, he was wrong (in a good way): by January, Tanzania’s Ministry of Energy indicated a power purchase agreement ought to be in place by first quarter end. This will help Mbeya reach financial close. Kibo’s latest transaction – buying 85% of the Mabesekwa Coal project in Botswana, which could also be integrated with a power station – is not a signal that Mbeya is a long way from being a done deal, Coetzee insists. Still, Kibo’s shareholders are starting to get restive about the length of time it is taking to get the Tanzanian government to commit, but Coetzee responds: “We are talking months, not years”.
LIFE OF LOUIS
He was a developer of businesses in various industrial sectors over 25 years before he came to mining, including playing a role in mobile phone operator Cell C. He is qualified in project management, supply chain management, law and languages, and holds an MBA from Bond University in Australia.
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