BEIJING (Commodity Online): After raiding iron ore mines across the world to make investments, China is now scouting for platinum producers in South Africa.

Recently, China has decided to pump in $877 million into South Africa's platinum sector. In a deal backed by the China-Africa Development Bank, Chinese state-owned mining firm Jinchuan will acquire a 51 per cent stake in the small platinum developer and develop its Frischgewaagd-Ledig mine.

A long-term supply agreement entitles the state firm to all of the platinum that is subsequently produced at the Rustenburg facility.

Platinum is mainly used in the production of catalytic converters, a device which reduces the toxicity of automobile emissions.

Wesizwe shelved a plan to develop the Rustenburg mine last year as the global recession eroded demand.

The investment will be China's second largest in Africa. In 2007, Beijing acquired a 20 per cent stake in South Africa's largest bank, Standard, for $5.5 billion.