Tanzania Nationalising Mines?

Tanzania President John Magufuli.

Dar-es Salaam – The government has denied reports it is nationalising mines after it passed new laws regulating mining operations in the country.

Tanzanian Parliamentarians in July passed three new laws that, among others, give government a higher stake in some mining operations.

The laws have triggered panic the government intends nationalising mines, forcing many foreign mining companies to downsize operations.

“The laws are not intended to lay the ground for nationalisation but seek to ensure the sovereign ownership of natural resources and this is in conformity with international principles,” government spokesperson Hassan Abbasi told local media.

“The government of Tanzania will continue attracting and protecting investors in the mining and other sectors so long as they adhere to the laws and regulations.”

The Natural Wealth and Resources (Permanent Sovereignty)] Act, 2017; The Natural Wealth and Resources Contracts (Review and Re-Negotiation of Unconscionable Terms)] Act, 2017; and The Written Laws (Miscellaneous Amendments)] Act, 2017 aim to stamp out what President John Magufuli has called years of corrupt practices and tax evasion that have robbed the country of revenue from the lucrative sector.

But the laws accompanied by a crackdown on mining firms in Tanzania have slowed fresh investment in what has long been seen as one of Africa’s brightest mining prospects as companies assess the consequences.