The mining industry in South Africa can act as a catalyst in the country’s decarbonization efforts, South Africa’s Minister of Energy and mining said on Tuesday.
The Minister highlighted that government has strategic aims to establish a mining corridor in the provinces of the North West, Limpopo and Northern Cape. Mineral resources including zinc, chrome, vanadium, nickel and platinum group metals are set to be in demand as the world accelerates efforts towards lower carbon emissions. The Minister further emphasized that South Africa’s mining industry is key to its economic recovery from the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Most of these [rare earth] minerals are going to be in high demand as we transition from high carbon to low carbon emissions [and] the minerals that we require to transition are in this [North West] province. These are the minerals that we call minerals of the future,” he said.
He pointed out that the Northwest, Limpopo and the Northern Cape have the potential to become the country’s mining hubs, noting that these provinces are key to mining corridors that can contribute to the country’s economic growth: “We believe that these three provinces can be developed into the mining headquarters of the country.”
“South Africa is endowed with vast mineral resources, which we must continue to exploit to grow our economy. We continue to encourage increased exploration of these minerals as part of our economic and reconstruction plan,” he said.