Sustaining development projects

The Industrial Development Corporation’s (IDC) Mining and Beneficiation Strategic Business Unit (SBU) was established in 1999 in response to the increased need to fund mining projects resulting from the unbundling of large traditional South African mining houses.

Headed by Abel Malinga, the unit focuses on the development of sustainable mining and beneficiation projects in South Africa and the rest of the continent. It aims to develop a vibrant entrepreneurial junior mining sector in South Africa and the rest of the continent and promote innovation in the industry and the development of new industries or sectors.

The unit provides risk capital to mining and beneficiation projects which:

  • Contribute to the generation of sustainable economic growth;

  • Have a high developmental impact; and

  • Attract local and global partners in mining projects that benefits South Africa and the rest of the continent.
    The mining and beneficiation SBU’s focus is to:

  • Encourage downstream value addition and investments in the development of the diamond cutting and polishing industry and jewellery;

  • Encourage upstream beneficiation investments;

  • Fund early stage project development in line with the mining charter’s criteria; and

  • Support the New Partnership for Africa’s Development through the promotion and funding of mining investments in the rest of Africa.

It supports equity transfer in the industry through BEE projects.
In the financial year to March 31 2007 the SBU invested a total of R1,61-billion in projects in the mining beneficiation sector. Of this R608-million was invested in the rest of Africa and R309-million in BEE acquisitions. More than 4 500 new job opportunities will be created as a result of these investments.

Most recently funded investments include the:

  • Capital backing of Iron Mineral Beneficiation Services’ (IMBS) ground-breaking Finesmelt process whereby waste iron ore particles are turned into millions of tons of competitively priced iron and steel. Two thousand job creation opportunities in the Nigel and Kathu areas in the Northern Cape will be created in the construction phase with a further 1 200 direct job opportunities generated by the production phase;

  • The IDC’s investment of almost R100-million in the IMBS-Nigel launch project in January next year will contribute an annual capacity of about 48 000 tons of iron and steel and 24 tons of ferrochrome;

  • Investment of R60-million in a start-up empowerment mining project with Kalahari Resources, a women-led broad-based BEE company, to conduct a bankable feasibility study for a manganese mine in the Northern Cape, Kuruman/Hotazel district. The manganese ore mine and sinter plant will produce 1,5-million tons a year. The project will have a positive developmental impact through the creation of about 2 000 temporary construction jobs in the two-year construction period and by year four, at full production, 833 staff should be employed;

  • Approval of funding for the State Diamond Trader, established to create an environment for beneficiation;

  • The SBU was instrumental in facilitating the establishment of a R100-million BEE jewellery manufacturing company in Kimberley;

  • Funding of a dense medium separation plant at the Golden Falls project in the Northern Cape to increase and improve production efficiency. The investment will create more than 400 job opportunities; and

  • Participation in a bankable feasibility study to assess the economic potential of the Mpefu coal project to reduce South Africa’s coking coal imports.
  • The IDC is a self-financing, South African state-owned national development finance institution that provides finance to promote industrial and entrepreneurial development

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