Connect with us

Support The NewsHawks


Firm part of Chinese behemoth



MAX Minds Investments, which runs Sabi Star lithium mine in Buhera, Manicaland province, is a subsidiary of Chinese company Shenzhen Chengxin Lithium Group, a global big hitter doing business with some of the largest companies in the world. Its footprints span Africa, Asia, and South America.


According to the company’s website, it was established on 29 December 2001, with a registered place in Chengdu, Sichuan province, China, and registered capital of 922 million yuan.

On 23 May 2008, the company listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

The company’s controlling shareholder Shenzhen Chengtun Group Co was founded in 1993. It has been vigorously developing energy metals nickel, cobalt, lithium, and copper since 2016.

One of Shenzhen Chengxin Lithium Group’s strategic shareholders is Build Your Dreams Company Ltd (BYD), which is the world’s top-selling electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer.

 BYD has 5% shareholding in Shenzhen Chengxin Lithium Group.

BYD has a huge global market share in EV, electronic control, and vehicle core technology sectors, with operations across all six continents.

In addition, Chengxin is also a leading sup[1]plier of lithium hydroxide to the South Korean giant electronics company LG International.

 According to the company website, Chengxin has more than 40 subsidiaries, mainly in Sichuan Province, Guangdong province, Indonesia, Argentina, and Zimbabwe.

 It has more than 3 300 employees. As of the end of 2022, the company’s total assets were 18.43 billion yuan, and the net assets attributable to the listed company was 12.73 billion yuan.

 In 2022, the company’s operating income was 12.04 billion yuan, and the net profit attributable to the listed company was 5.55 billion yuan.

The company’s main business is production and sales of new lithium energy battery materials.

 “The main products are lithium concentrate, lithium carbonate, lithium hydroxide, lithium chloride, and lithium metal,” the company says.

The company holds its Zimbabwean operations in high regard, given its proven reserves.

“In terms of lithium resources, the company has expanding strategy both at home and abroad. The company has a professional mine development and construction team. The company has the experience of successfully developing Aoyinuo Mining in Jinchuan County, Sichuan Province which is difficult to construct. The company has successfully developed Aoyinuo Mining in Jinchuan County, Sichuan Province, which is difficult to construct. The production scale of raw ore is 405 000 tonnes per year, equivalent to about 75 000 tonnes of lithium concentrate,” the company said.

“The company owns the Sabi Star lithium tantalum project in Zimbabwe, with a raw ore production scale of 900 000 tonnes per year, equivalent to about 200 000 tonnes of lithium concentrate.”

 In Zimbabwe, the company is projected to generate US$2 billion worth of revenue annually. It is being seen as a vital cog in Harare’s ambitious plan to establish a US$12 billion mining sector economy by 2030. In addition, Chengxin is also a leading supplier of lithium hydroxide to the South Korean giant electronics company LG International.

 In terms of other business partnerships and supply chains, Chengxin supplies a significant share of its lithium salts to Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd (CATL), a Chinese battery manufacturer and technology company which has been ranked the top EV battery consumer from 2017 to 2022.

Chengxin Group’s current business covers lithium mining, the production and sale of lithium carbonate, lithium hydroxide, lithium chloride and lithium metal products, and a small amount of forest business.

 Its lithium business operations and interests are mainly distributed in Sichuan, Guangdong, Indonesia, Argentina, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, Chile, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Indonesia.

The group also has huge lithium salt business operations through its two subsidiaries, Sichuan Zhiyuan Lithium Company Ltd (Zhiyuan Lithium Salt Project) and Suining Chengxin Lithium Company Ltd (Suining Chengxin Lithium Salt Project).

 It is noted that in addition to its lithium operations in Sabi Star, the company also operates other lithium mining projects.

It operates Yelonggou Taiyanghekou Mine in China through its subsidiary company called Jinchuan Aoyinuo Mining Company Ltd based in China’s Sichuan province; Murong Mine by Huirong Mining Company Ltd and SDLA lake lithium project in Salta Province Argentina through its Argentinian partner Salta Exploraciones SA (SESA).

The Chengxin Group entered a joint venture with a Singapore-registered investment company called Stellar Investment and formed ChengTok Lithium Indonesia Company to construct a lithium salts production facility in the Indonesia Morowali Industrial Park.

The investment in the Indonesian lithium plant is linked to Tsingshan Holdings Group which has a 35% stake in the joint venture, and huge investments in Zimbabwe steel, chrome, and coal sector through its subsidiaries.

 Tsingshan Holdings Group through subsidiary Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Disco) is building a US$1.5 billion steel plant in Manhize, touted to become the largest in Africa, and has seen more than 101 families from the local Mushenjere Village losing farmland.

 Disco is already erecting a wall to enclose farming and grazing land, further shutting out the affected villagers.

138 more families from Kwaedza Village are also facing a similar predicament as Disco has already set pegs in their village, according to a governance watchdog, the Centre for Research and Development (CRD).

The villagers mostly originated from poor and densely populated communal areas of Rukovere, Mahusvu, Msasa, Unyetu villages of Chikomba district in Mashonaland East province.

Chengxin Group has a lithium concentrate off-take agreement with AVZ Minerals for the supply of spodumene concentrate from the Manono Lithium and Tin Project, Democratic Republic of Congo, which will ensure supply of spodumene concentrate from the Congo.

Chengxin Group is considering investing in Ukraine’s lithium deposits in Shevchenkivske and Dobra. Within Zimbabwe, it was noted that through another subsidiary company called Chengyi Lithium International Limited, the group had signed a joint venture agreement with China’s Sinomine Resource Group Co Ltd, which currently owns Bikita Minerals.

Last year, another governance watchdog, the Centre for Natural Resource Governance (CNRG), challenged Treasury to come clean on how much money the country is making from lithium mined by Chinese-run Bikita Minerals, amid allegations of opaque operations.

 In May, mining was suspended at the Sino[1]mine Resource Group-run Bikita Minerals for a week after the CNRG raised a red flag amid allegations that more than 40 trucks were leaving the mine with lithium ore.