HARARE – GLOBAL resources outfit, Tharisa, said at the weekend it had completed the first phase of its US$4,2 billion platinum operation in Zimbabwe.

The first phase of Karo Platinum involved exploration, according to Tharisa, which is carrying out the massive platinum operation in a joint venture with Karo Resources.

Tharisa CEO Phoevos Pouroulis revealed this while commenting on the group’s full year results.

“We have focused our energy in the right places and have invested in both our workforce and machinery, which will ensure we have the right tools to achieve our targets,” Pouroulis said.

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“Extremely pleasing is our Zimbabwean development pipeline, especially with Karo Platinum completing phase one of the exploration programme with positive results apparent at this early stage.”

The platinum project, is located in Zimbabwe’s Mhondoro district, and is key to President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s push for economic recovery through the ‘Zimbabwe is Open for Business’ strategy.

It is believed to have significant resources that have the potential to double Zimbabwe’s current output from Zimplats, Mimosa and Unki, when it brings up 1,4 million ounces of platinum by 2023.

A 300 Megawatt solar power plant and a base metals refinery that will allow it to export finished products directly from Zimbabwe.

“In the year under review Tharisa significantly reset its mining operations, with a revised pit layout, an improvement in waste stripping, and the de-bottlenecking of the production plants,” said the chief executive.

“Though this translated into lower production than last year’s record performance, the significant work done provides Tharisa with a clear path to delivering on our Vision 2020 strategy.

“The key remaining investment to achieve our production goal, the Vulcan plant, is under construction and remains firmly on track for commissioning in calendar Q4 2020.”