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Legal challenges to Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane are piling up thick and fast, with the Chamber of Mines on Tuesday lodging an urgent application to halt the controversial minister’s proposals to "restrict" the granting of new mineral and prospecting rights, freezing mining transactions. A dominant theme at this week’s results presentations of major local mining companies Anglo American Platinum and Kumba Iron Ore has been investors’ concerns about their pipelines of transactions, their empowerment status and the regulatory environment. Zwane has twice rocked the mining industry by first gazetting a controversial third version of the Mining Charter on June 15, which knocked R51bn off listed mining companies’ market capitalisation, and then on July 19 gazetting a notice that he proposed to restrict the granting of new mining and prospecting rights and the transfer of mineral rights between companies, the lifeblood of the mining sector.The chamber now has three legal pro...

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