As of the 18 April 2011, all applications for prospecting rights, mining permits and mining rights are required to be submitted in electronic format through the Department of Mineral Resources' ("DMR") online application system (South African Mineral Resources Administration online system ("SAMRAD")). Once an application is successfully submitted through SAMRAD, such application will be automatically routed to the relevant regional office for adjudication.
The DMR has stated that the new online application system is intended to make the application process more transparent by providing greater accessibility to information pertaining to the processing of applications and thereby reducing the turnaround time for finalising such applications.
To use SAMRAD, applicants have to register online whereafter the applicants are required to select the relevant region, commodity and property to confirm availability. Provided that no other person holds rights in respect of the same minerals and land, the minerals and land sought by the applicant should be available. If available, the applicant will be required to select the type of application required, complete such application and upload the prescribed supporting documents.
SAMRAD comprises guidelines intended to provide clarity on the provisions of the MPRDA governing the various applications, by expounding on the meaning of such provisions and setting out the procedure to be adhered to by applicants and the DMR itself. The following guidelines are available on SAMRAD at www.dmr.gov.za or http://portal.samradonline.co.za:
Guideline for Consultations with Communities and Interested and Affected Persons;
Guideline for the Compilation of an Environmental Impact Assessment and Environmental Management Programme;
Guideline for a Mining Work Programme;
Guideline for the Compilation of a Scoping Report (with due regard to the consultation process with Communities and Interested and Affected Persons);
Guideline for the Compilation of an Environmental Management Plan;
Guideline for the Renewal of a Mining Right;
Guideline for a Prospecting Work Programme; and
Guideline for the Submission of a Social and Labour Plan.
In addition, the online application system provides templates in respect of the applications that may be submitted through SAMRAD. All applications are required to be submitted in the format prescribed by such templates failing which the application will be rejected.
Templates for the following applications are available on SAMRAD:
BEE template for online application (applicable to all applicants for mining and production rights and applications in terms of which section 17(4) of the MPRDA is invoked. Such applicants will be required to submit the prescribed information evidencing how the provisions of section 2(d) and (f) of the MPRDA will be achieved);
prospecting work programme for a prospecting right application with bulk sampling;
prospecting work programme for a prospecting right application without bulk sampling;
scoping report (with due regard to the consultation process with communities and interested and affected persons);
application for the renewal of a mining permit;
application for the approval of the Minister to use land surface contrary to the objects of the MPRDA;
report on the results of a consultation with communities and interested and affected persons;
environmental impact assessment and environmental management programme;
mining work programme;
application for the consent of the Minister in terms of section 11 MPRDA;
social and labour plan;
report on the results of prospecting operations;
application for the permission of the Minister to remove and dispose bulk samples;
environmental management plan;
report on the extent of compliance with the approved environmental management plan and the rehabilitation to be completed and the estimated cost thereof;
application for the consent of the Minister to amend rights permits programmes or plans;
environmental management plan for small scale mining (applicable to mining permits where less than 200 m3 per quarter will be excavated - this excludes gold and coal mining);
financial and technical competence report in respect of mining permits;
consulting with interested and affected parties; and
report submitted to meet the requirements of Item C and Item D of the renewal of a mining right.
The launch of SAMRAD, also ushers in the lifting of the 8 month moratorium on the lodging of new applications for prospecting rights. in respect of all provinces except Mpumalanga.
Due to the high traffic volume, we have not as yet successfully gained access to SAMRAD. We are accordingly unable to comment on the efficiency thereof. We will, however, in due course send further e-Alerts regarding SAMRAD.
Written by various partners at Webber Wentzel Attorneys.
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