[News24Wire] So many men want to compete in Zimbabwe's infamous Mr Ugly competition that the organisers are being forced to hold three semi-finals, the private Newsday reported on Wednesday.
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Curated by Investors Europe Stock Brokers
When it became clear that alluvial diamonds were fast running dry in the secretive Chiadzwa (Marange) diamond fields, one morning Mines and Mining Development Minister, Walter Chidhakwa — in a move short of nationalisation — started his day by announcing that government was going to merge all the eight diamond-mining firms operating in the area.
Before anyone had made head and tail of what the minister was driving at, Murowa Diamonds — a private diamond firm jointly owned by Rio Tinto Plc and RioZim — had been roped in as it started emerging that government was desperate to get hold of machinery and technology suitable for underground mining of the diamondiferous kimberlites remaining in Chiadzwa.
In a no nonsense tone, Chidhakwa indicated that government would not accept any objections, adding that the State was ready to compensate mining houses that would not accept the new arrangement, after which they would be asked to leave the country.
“If you do not want to be in this company, we might have to work out ways, methods of parting ways (and) the kind of compensation that we need to give to those who many not want to participate in this company,” fumed Chidhakwa. Every smash- and-grab operation has to be accompanied by tough talk!
Just like in Jebs, the rules had been changed overnight and there was nothing the mining firms could do about it! In effect, instead of Chidhakwa punishing those fly-by-night firms that looted Chiadzwa dry, he is rewarding them with a stake in a bigger enterprise.
The list is endless.
With law of the jungle seemingly being the law in Zimbabwe, the country does not seem to need any enemies to keep investors and development partners ashore...'
Mega-rich Zimbabwean businessman Robert Mhlanga stands at the centre of an opaque network of companies set up to cash in on the Marange diamond fields with the help of the Zimbabwe government.
Mhlanga, a retired air vice-marshall, is widely regarded as a close associate of President Robert Mugabe and a business representative of the Mugabe family, although both parties have denied this.
Central to Mbada's operation is a South African scrap-metal company, New Reclamation.
Despite its lack of mining expertise, Reclamation was chosen to partner Marange Resources, wholly owned by the state's Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC), in a joint venture called Mbada Diamonds.
Photo courtesy of ZimEye Psychology has a sense of style only rivalled by The Riddler from Batman Photo courtesy of nehanda radio Say what you...
The Zimbabwean risks include the possibility of nationalisation, higher tax rates, a liquidity crisis, a shrinking economy, flight of skills, deteriorating infrastructure, obstructive officials and the return of the Zimbabwean dollar. The good thing is that these risks are well known, to the extent that some investors avoid Zimbabwean equities totally as they do not want to deal with the uncertainties. The obvious risks give us the opportunity to invest in high-quality businesses at valuations that are unheard of in the rest of the world, with the possible exception of Russia. Of course, there is a chance that we are wrong and these companies are in fact overpriced. This will be the case if, rather than the economy stumbling along as we expect, there is an economic collapse similar to the 2000 to 2008 period. We are willing to take this risk. A total economic collapse is unlikely as this is what led to ZANU-PF losing popularity and the election in 2008. When there is no money for the people there is also a lot less money for the politicians – something they want to avoid. In the case of an extreme downside scenario we own quality industrial businesses with little debt that should retain some value.'
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