The new Mining Charter is a major disaster for the industry. Where does the laughable mineral resources minister get his advice?

How can a charter force mining companies to pay dividends over a 10-year period to facilitate the repayment of finance extended to empowerment "partners", with a penalty if the dividends fall short of extinguishing such debt at the end of the period?

Such an imposition on a listed company is contrary to the most elementary principles of capital management. Dividends should only be declared and paid by the directors of a company after due consideration of numerous factors, not least of which are ongoing liquidity and solvency.

The mining companies and the Chamber of Mines must fight this to the bitter end.

John LouwHoughton

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