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Russia 'to swap gunships for Zim platinum'

28 June 2012, 13:10

Cape Town - Zimbabwe is reportedly in talks with Russia for the supply of military helicopters in exchange for platinum deposits, according to reports.

Quoting a privately-owned Russian newspaper Kommersant business daily, various media reports said Russia was holding negotiations with Zimbabwe on an inter-governmental agreement on stimulating investment and defence.

"Russian Technologies has already secured preliminary support from Zimbabwe's official representatives during its visit to the country in April," a source within the Russian presidential administration reportedly said, adding the local authorities were interested in the supply of Russia arms, particularly military helicopters.

"The issue being discussed is the transfer to Russian Technologies of the rights to develop the deposit in exchange for the supply of helicopters," the source said.

A source close to Russian Technologies is said to have confirmed the state corporation's interest in Zimbabwe's Darwendale project.

Darwendale has proven platinum reserves of 19 tons and total resources of 755 tons taking into account other metals, such as palladium, gold, nickel, copper and others. Total capital investment in the deposit development from 2011-2055 is estimated at $2.8bn.

- News24



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