MACIG Connect Series
Scania actively engages with customers to solve their transport equipment needs, giving the company a competitive edge.
Could you provide an overview of Scania’s regional and South African operations? How important is South Africa for Scania?
Ruben Govender (RG) and Charnie-Lee Kruger (CL): Scania has eight focus markets around the world and is truly global and shares expertise between the regions it operates in. In South Africa, specifically, there are 1,800 mines and we try to see around 10% of them every year. We have vast experience in mining, and this is important because our vehicles are very specific; we need to understand the conditions our customers are mining in, the methods they are using, the types of ore and tonnages they are extracting, and the road systems around their mines. We do not only sell vehicles, but offer service solutions that ensure maximum up-time and productivity. The vehicles may look the same, but their internal systems are quite different. We often sell customers a range of different vehicles, but traditionally our business is focused on tipper and side tipper trucks.
Southern Africa is a very important market for Scania Mining and although we have traditionally been known for the long-haulage business, there are extensive opportunities for us to grow our revenue and profitability in this sector. We offer transport solutions across the entire mining cycle, from exploration to port.
How difficult has it been for Scania to maintain a constant fleet of vehicles in such tough times for the industry? Continue reading
MACIG Connect Series
Exxaro is experimenting with the ‘Internet of Things’, and it will probably be embedded throughout the business in two to three years.
What have been the major developments for Exxaro in the last year?
2016 has been characterized by our continued response to the downturn in commodity prices. Exxaro is largely invested in coal, which makes up almost all its revenue, but also has significant minority investments in iron ore, titanium, ferro-silicon and zinc. In iron ore, we have a 20% interest in SIOC, and recently disposed of a project in the Republic of Congo, Brazzaville. We also have a ca44% equity interest in Tronox, as well as a 26% interest in its local operations, which provide the feedstock for manufacturing pigment. We have a 26% interest in Black Mountain Mining, a zinc operation based in the Northern Cape. Each of these operations has faced historically low prices – in iron they have even come down to less than a third of their peak Continue reading
Redavia is the African market leader of rental solar for mining.
Could you provide a brief introduction to Redavia and an overview of its presence across Africa?
Redavia rents containerized solar farms to remote industrial off-grid operations, particularly in mining. Our primary market today is Tanzania, followed by Kenya. In mining, we are interested in anything above 1MW of solar capacity, which will include any gold mine in Africa.
We are also working on a few deals in West Africa, which we hope to sign in 2017. To begin with, however, we wanted to set up a core business in one country, anchored by the Shanta Gold project. Redavia is now the largest solar farm operator in Tanzania, with a few further projects in the food processing and utilities sectors.
How does the business environment and infrastructure for energy and renewables in particular compare between Tanzania and other African countries? Continue reading
The Volvo Penta brand is making inroads into Zimbabwe’s industrial and mining sectors.
Volvo Penta has been in existence since the start of the 20th century. Could you introduce the brand and provide an overview of your operations in Zimbabwe?
Our industrial side of the business is spread over Zimbabwe as a whole and we also service the southern region of Zambia. The marine side of the business is located in Kariba, in the north of the country. We have held the Volvo Penta agency since 2000. We saw an opening in the industrial market segment and opened an industrial office in Harare to support the existing sector; Industrial Stationary Engines (Gensets, Pump Sets, etc.) already in the country and to provide an outlet to supply new sets into the market as well as to offer support in the mining sector with Versatile Engines. Volvo Penta is fairly new to the industrial market in Zimbabwe, but has been very successful so far; companies such as Sandvik have signed up with Volvo Penta and most of their new Loaders and Haulers are supplied with Volvo Penta power plants. Sandvik are impressed with the fuel economy, low emissions and reliability of these engines. Currently, the Zimplats Ngezi mine has 8 x TH430L Haulers(30T). Freda Rebecca gold mine currently has 3 LHD15 Loaders (15T). The growth in this side of our business depends on the demand for platinum from Zimplats and gold from Freda Rebecca. The machines run 24/7 and require servicing every eight to ten days.
CRB Africa Legal has carved a niche for itself as the leading Tanzanian law firm representing mining companies.
You have an extensive background in the mining industry and were particularly involved in the 1998 Mining Act. How did this come about, and how did it change Tanzania?
In 1998, the government wanted to open the industry to international investors. There was already a mining act but no corresponding mining policy. Such a policy was therefore put in place to go with a new mining act and a proper fiscal regime to encourage foreign investors. We organized an international summit to discuss the policy, and worked with an international advisory team from London. It took three years to generate the policy. My firm was consulted on how to write the new act, which came into place in 1999. The new act brought big changes – traditionally we were a command economy, with all major economic activity in the hands of the government. After 1999, big companies like Barrick Gold, Ashanti and AngloGold arrived and started prospecting for gold; in the following decade we had six senior miners active in the country.
How was CRB Africa Legal established and where does the mining sector fit into its portfolio? Continue reading
Southern Africa has long profited from its mineral wealth, until recently. Mature mining destinations were the hardest hit by the collapse in commodity prices. At last the area is seeing some respite.
By Mungo Smith
IMAGE: Courtesy of Vermeer
The downturn in the prices of commodities has slowed down mining activity in Southern Africa over the last three years. Nonetheless, signs of recovery are evident. Immense mineral wealth, from diamonds in Botswana and Zimbabwe, to massive coal deposits in Mozambique and South Africa’s well-known gold reserves, continue to lure investors as commodity prices recover gradually and governments undertake efforts to boost mining activity. Continue reading
Country: Africa Countries • Industry: Mining • Publication: Global Business Reports • Release Date: February 2017 • Authors: Catherine Howe, Laura Brangwin, Imara Salas, Meredith Veit, Pavlina Pavlova, Eduardo Arcos
Countries across the continent face common challenges and increasing competition for a diminished pool of global investment and, although some governments are increasing incentives in response, others are tipping the scale too far towards the interests of the country. In an industry already high in risk, factors such as the vast progress in infrastructure and increasing political stability, as well as a more stable legislative framework in many countries, are widely improving investor confidence.
There is a sense of optimism, particularly in younger mining jurisdictions with newly recognized potential. West African countries such as Côte d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso exude particular enthusiasm, with a number of promising exploration activities underway, overshadowing more mature jurisdictions such as Ghana and Mali in terms of interest. Southern Africa’s mining sectors have perhaps been most affected by the downturn, and there are many challenges to be solved going forward. Meanwhile, in East Africa, Kenya’s relatively nascent sector presents itself as the rising star, whilst Tanzania’s much more mature sector is becoming a less favorable investment destination due to its drive to increase return from the mining sector and the seemingly rash decision-making of the new government.