By Thomas Chidamba
Platinum Giant, Zimplats continued with its clean sheet on safety, health and environment after recording 2.4 million fatalities free shifts for the year.
Only nine lost time injuries were recorded during the year.
Presenting the company’s Integrated annual report, Chairman Dr Fholisani Sydeny Mafumadi said the platinum giant was committed to achieve the ultimate objective of sustainable zero harm.
“I am delighted to report that despite the increase in the total recordable injuries at work, your Company went through the year without a fatality accumulating 2.4
million fatality free shifts by year end.
“Nine lost-time injuries were unfortunately recorded during the year, an
increase of two from the seven recorded in the prior year (including a fatality).
“The LTIFR for the year deteriorated from 0.45 reported in FY2019 to 0.59 . On a positive note, total injuries on duty decreased from 14 in FY2019 to 10 in the current year resulting in the total injury frequency rate (TIFR) decreasing from 0.90 in FY2019 to 0.65 in FY2020. Your board and management remain committed to achieve the ultimate objective of sustainable zero harm,” he said.
Chief executive officer Mr Alexander Mhembere echoed the same sentiments saying the company will intensify its occupational health and wellness programmes.
“We remain committed to our quest to achieve sustainable zero harm.
“I want to commend our valued contractors and employees who have also shown great commitment to turning around the safety performance. Testimony to this, is the improvement seen in the second half of the year where three LTIs were recorded against six in the first half of the year.
“The Group’s integrated occupational health and wellness programmes focusing on mental and physical wellbeing of employees and contractors performed well during the year.
“Occupational health surveillance screening continued to influence employee lifestyle changes through education and early detection of non-communicable
diseases,” Mr Mhembere said.
Turning to the Covid-19 pandemic Dr Mafumadi said the company’s management measures were upto the task to combat the spread of the novel virus as no cases were recorded at the mine.
“I applaud the board and management for the measures implemented in the fight against COVID-19 which resulted in no notable disruptions to operations.
“The Group had no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at all the operations. I am also happy to report that while the Group’s priority is not to have any confirmed positive COVID-19 cases, appropriate facilities have been put in place to manage
any confirmed cases, should they occur,” he said.
During the period under review, Zimplats mined 7.2 million tonnes of ore, 7% more than the 6.7 million tonnes achieved in FY2019.
Milling volumes also increased from 6.5 million tonnes in FY2019 to 6.8 million tonnes due to ore from Mupani Mine and benefits of fleet productivity enhancement initiatives that started towards the end of FY2019 and have now been rolled out to all the underground mines.
“The concentrator plants outperformed their previous year throughput due to higher running time and milling rate.
“The 6E ounces produced increased marginally to 580 178 ounces from 579 591 ounces achieved in FY2019. The positive impact of the 5% increase in mill volumes
on metal production was partly offset by in-furnace inventory build-up on start-up after the 122 days’ major furnace rebuild shutdown which commenced on 10 June 2019 and was completed in the first half of FY2020,” Dr Mafumadi said.
As such, Zimplats recorded a profit for the year of US$261.8 million, 81% increase from US$144.9 million achieved in the prior year.
Dr Mafumadi said the profit was as a result of increase in revenue.
“This was mainly attributed to the increase in revenue (US$868.9 million in FY2020 compared to US$631 million in FY2019) arising from improved metal prices and decrease in exchange losses from US$20.2 million in FY2019 to US$4.8
“This was partly offset by the discontinuation of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe export incentive scheme in February 2019 resulting in other income decreasing by US$45.8 million compared to prior year. I am happy to report that your Company paid the final instalment of US$42.5 million on the Revolving Credit Facility with Standard Bank of South Africa,” he said.