14/07/2017 16:05 SAST | Updated 14/07/2017 16:05 SAST

Zwane Puts The Brakes On Controversial Mining Charter -- For Now

The minister of mineral resources Mosebenzi Zwane has hit the brakes on the 2017 mining charter pending an interdict application.

Minister of Mineral Resources Mosebenzi Zwane has suspended the implementation of the 2017 mining charter in light of an urgent interdict application brought by the Chamber of Mines.

In a press release on Friday, the chamber said Zwane had agreed not to implement or apply the provisions of the 2017 Reviewed Mining Charter in any way, pending judgment in its urgent interdict application to North Gauteng High Court on 26 June.

The hearing scheduled for 18 July has been postponed to a later date in September following a request by the department for extra time to prepare its answering affidavit to the interdict application.

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The chamber's CEO Roger Baxter said this was good news for the mining industry, but reiterated its continued commitment to transformation that is "meaningful and lasting"and that "ensures the sustainability and growth of the industry".

Read: 7 Reasons Why Everyone's Worried About The New Mining Charter

The Chamber of Mines, whose members account for approximately 90 percent of South Africa's mineral production, refused to attend the unveiling of the charter by the Department of Mineral Resources in June. It claimed the department did not adequately engage stakeholders in the lead-up to its unveiling which Zwane later denied.

One of the most contested sections of the charter is that thirty percent of each South African mine must be blacked owned within 12 months.

New prospecting rights must also include 50 percent black control and a minimum of one percent of mine turnover must be distributed to local communities. Boards of mines must also have 50 percent black representation, half of which must also be female, Zwane announced.