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Zimbabwe's plan to build a platinum refinery recieved a boost after platinum miners met the deadline for submission of proposals to construct it by the end of 2016
President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF government set a deadline of 18 January 2014 for companies to send in proposals to build the refinery or risk seeing a ban implemented on raw exports of the metal.
The refinery, which will include a 600MW power plant, will cost an estimated US$3.2bn, the government said.
"They have submitted to us their proposals and we are evaluating them," said mines and mining development minister Walter Chidhakwa.
"They have made a commitment that they will continue to support Zimbabwe and the setting up of a platinum refinery is one of their aspirations," Chidhakwa added.
Zimbabwe’s platinum industry, the second largest in the world, is currently producing 12,190 kg of annual metal output, closing in on 14,174 kg required to effectively run a refinery.
Asides the platinum refinery, a newspaper report stated that Zimbabwe also plans to develop a coal methane project as well as a precious mineral development centre to “cut and polish” diamonds in bid to drive economic growth, estimated to grow 4.2 per cent this year.