State failures caused illegal mining boom


Picture: Sibusiso Mdlalose

About 30% of mining profits have been lost through informal or artisanal mining in South Africa.

This is the estimate of energy and mining analyst Ted Blom.

He was speaking as police and communities are targeting so-called zama-zamas in Johannesburg’s mining belt.

The crackdown follows the rape of eight women at a mine dump in Krugersdorp.

But Blom contends that zama-zamas are taking advantage of a gap caused by mine closures.

He also notes that while illegal mining is bleeding profits, mining companies are also known to by-pass South Africa’s laws, and send their profits overseas.

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