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Govt to meet investor for Liganga project to start

Govt to meet investor for Liganga project to start

THE government announced that it will meet with an investor of Liganga Iron Ore and the Mchuchuma Coal Mining and Power projects, to finalise talks on the fate of the joint scheme take off.

Minister for Trade and Industries, Prof Kitila Mkumbo told the National Assembly Tuesday that the talks are expected to come up with agreement, which will set the ball rolling for the project to start next year as planned.

He gave the remarks when responding to a supplementary question by Ms Esther Matiko (Special Seats-Chadema), adding that the government is committed to ensure the project takes off under the win-win situation.

In her question, the legislator said the project was taking too long to start and asked why the government was taking time to look for another investor to take up the implementation.

According to the lawmaker, the project was taking time because the investor had no capital to implement it.

Responding further, Prof Mkumbo said the project was indeed taking long, but added that the public should understand that the investor had a contract with the government via the National Development Corporation (NDC).

He said there is no need to rush into final details as any hurry up might result into problems, however, he assured the August House that negotiation team is expected to meet the investor to finalize the remaining issues.

The minister said the government is making sure the project begins in the next financial year as directed by the Head of State.

In his preliminary question, Ludewa MP Joseph Kamonga wanted to know when the residents of his constituency, who were removed from their homesteads to pave way for the project will be compensated.

The minister said the project which will be implemented in collaboration between the government via NDC will be 20 per cent owned by the private investors namely Sichuan Hongda (Group) Company Limited (SHGCL 80percent).

He said one of the issues that led to the delays of the scheme was that the investor requested for incentives, which the government did not consent, because they were going against (Sovereignty over Natural resources) which are Natural Wealth and Resources (Permanent Sovereignty) Act, 2017 and Natural Wealth and Resources Contract Review & Re-Negotiation of Unconscionable Terms Act, 2017).

Again, he asked when the project will begin and contribute to the economic growth of Njombe region.

Responding to the question, the Deputy Minister in the ministry, Exaud Kigahe said negotiations were ongoing and the execution process will begin upon completion.

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Author: NELLY MTEMA & KATARE MBASHIRU

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