BHP commented on the last of four days of hearings at parliament in Cape Town on proposed changes to the 2002 Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act. The government said the changes are to ensure the nation benefits more from its mineral endowment. They would enable the mines minister to force producers to offer an unspecified part of their output to local processors and get permission to export any strategic minerals.

The world’s largest mining company joins Anglo American and a succession of other metals, oil and gas producers in telling lawmakers that the proposed amendments are overly onerous, too vague and will have unintended consequences.

Eskom Holdings, South Africa’s power utility, backed plans to have coal declared a strategic resource to avert expected shortages of the fuel from 2018.