Mining companies hold their breath as the government introduces a radical new legal regime for the industry
Students at the Law School of Tanzania were presented with two case studies for their commercial law examination last month which illustrate how the government's dispute with mining companies has entered the public consciousness. The first case focused on African Barrick Gold's metamorphosis into Acacia Mining and whether that change was properly made according to Tanzanian law. Students were asked to set out the advice they'd give to both the government and Acacia on issues of legal identity, a tax dispute simmering since 2012, and the recent ban on makinikia, the concentrate sent overseas for smelting until President John Magufuli banned its export in March. The second concerns an imaginary firm, Cheer and Cheerful Spare Parts, seeking to take over 'Makinikia Limited', an undercapitalised firm with problematic directors.
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