Copper-cobalt: Chinese CNMC struggling in Zambia but progressing in DRC
The Chinese mining giant has suffered several setbacks at its Zambian mines, but is currently in a test phase in DRC, with a view to increasing its capacities there.
Private security magnate Erik Prince's Frontier Services Group has just landed a major contract to protect the assets of Sicomines. The big Sino-Congolese mines-for-infrastructure joint venture is currently facing strong public criticism, as well as some perimeter security problems.
With congestion at the Beitbridge border post between Zimbabwe and South Africa recently worse than ever, the Kazungula Bridge between Zambia and Botswana has just been completed, opening up a new direct route between the Copperbelt and the port of Durban.
Taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic, the security contractor's Frontier Services Group has established itself in the highly profitable medical evacuation business as it continues to provide its traditional services to Chinese mining groups, particulary in the DRC.
An official working for the province of Lualaba has been suspended for having advised Kazakhstan's Eurasian Resources Group on the relocation of farmers affected by its Metalkol copper and cobalt project. The governorate got wind of the affair after complaints from the farmers about the low level of compensation paid by the mining group.