CAPE TOWN– South Africa has re-affirmed its commitment to supporting investors and helping smaller miners to be grow to the level of big mining companies.

Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane and Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies have promoted the country’s minerals and mining industry during their investment Q and A sessions held on the side-lines of the African Mining Indaba taking place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) here this week.

Both Ministers emphasized the importance of processing of the country’s mineral resources to enhance the South African economy.

They also agreed that the government has moved beyond talking about the beneficiation of mineral resources and there is a notable progress thus far, particularly on the development of a fuel cell bus prototype in partnership with Busmark, a local bus body manufacturer and titanium powder, the Department of Mineral Resources and the Department of Trade and Industry said in a joint statement.

Davies highlighted the recent announcement by Caterpillar of its investment to the tune of 1.3 billion Rand (about 109 million US dollars) over 10 years. The investment will empower local and black owned enterprises through Enterprise and Supplier Development. The investment is in line with the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment’s Equity Equivalence Investment Programme (EEIP).

Through this deal, we will see Caterpillar, the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment empowering our people. Four components have been identified for phase one: mining buckets, truck bodies, coolants and gensets, Davies said.

He added that about 3,900 jobs — both direct and indirect — are expected to be created through this partnership.

Davies said South Africa has opportunities for investment in any sector of the economy and government is ready to support investors through InvestSA, an initiative of the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti).

Zwane called for all stakeholder to work together to resolve all the challenges facing the industry in order to move the country and the economy forward. He emphasised that he is open and ready to further engage with industry stakeholders on pertinent issues regarding the amendments of the Mining Charter III.