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MY GOV’T WON’T ENGAGE IN UNFAIR MINING CONTRACTS AKUFO-ADDO

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said his administration will not engage in unfair, corrupt and dubious mining contracts that will impact negatively on the country's development.

 

"In centuries, our minerals had been the attraction for adventurous and fortune seekers. Many forms of thrones and crowns are adorn with the jelly of taking from our lands not always through straight forward means" he stated.

 

The Ghanaian Leader asserted that “Africa has made the world rich with our minerals, our gemstones adorn crowns and homes around the world, it is time to make Africa prosperous, and enable her people to attain a dignified standard of living. Join us in this exciting project for sustainable economic growth.”

 

Delivering the keynote address at the 25th anniversary of "Investing in Africa Mining INDABA" Conference in Cape Town, South Africa on Tuesday he said Ghana's new mining policy implication is to leverage the country's political stability and economic environment in all sectors of the mining industry on a win win basis.

 

Acknowledging the importance of mining to Ghana's economy, President Akufo-Addo said, his government will engage smart lawyers and financial experts, with varied backgrounds in negotiating mining and other investment contracts for the mutual benefits of all.

 

Ghana, in 1986, as a result of the unstable political environment, coupled with poor understanding in mining contracts, largely influenced the country's mining law that seemed to satisfy investors, rather than the nation, hence engaged in poor mining contracts that was skewed to the advantage of investors, to the neglect of the nation.

 

For some time now, there has been a lot of conferences, debates, points, and counterpoints, in and outside Africa, all geared towards addressing the intractable problem of the insatiable exploitation of Africa's natural resources by so-called advanced countries to the neglect of the African people.

 

He said African lands were fought over and decided along unreasonable lines, adding that, the pursuit of minerals, had degraded the continent's vegetation and polluted many of her rivers.

 

The inundated crude process by "adventurous and fortune seekers, to exploit the continent's natural resources, especially diamonds, leaving host communities largely undeveloped, had led many to describe it as "blood diamonds", President Akufo-Addo noted.

 

He said, after centuries of exploitation, it was imperative that, Africa, which has approximately 30 percent of the earth's remaining mineral resources, leverage this strategic position, to create a better life for its growing youth.

 

President Akufo-Addo said with Africa's youth, predicted to increase by 42 percent by 2030, it was strategic that, African leaders explored new and innovative ways, to manage the abundance of the continent's natural resources for the creation of jobs for the teaming youth, and a wealth and prosperous Africa.

 

In 2015, Youth in Africa constituted 19 percent of the global youth population, numbering 226 million.

 

In what appears to be President Akufo-Addo's drive to have Government and mining companies collaborate in an intelligent and sustainable manner, to transform mining communities, he last month recommissioned AngloGold Ashanti Gold Mine at Obuasi, which was shut down in 2014.

 

The initial investment in the redevelopment project is $881 million, with a total investment of $1.6 billion. The whole investment package has been approved by Parliament.

 

It is estimated that 2,500 jobs will be created and the vibrancy in economic activities, including the general improvement in the lives of the people of Obuasi will be brought back.

 

The President said, time had come that, communities, including Obuasi reflects the riches associated with towns that hosts the richest gold mine in the country, and one of the richest in the world.

 

President Akufo-Addo said as part of the exploitation of the traditional minerals of gold, diamond and manganese in Ghana, Government has taken the decision to exploit her considerable bauxite and iron ore deposits.

 

 “We have established the Ghana Integrated Aluminium Development Corporation, a public corporation, to take charge of the development, with appropriate investors, of the full value chain of our bauxite resources in order to establish an integrated aluminium industry in Ghana.

 

“We are also determined to build an integrated iron and steel industry, out of our extensive iron ore and manganese deposits, to serve the needs of our country and region, and, to that end, Parliament, in its current session, will consider and, hopefully, approve the establishment of another public corporation, the Ghana Integrated Iron and Steel Development Corporation, which will, with appropriate investors, take charge of this undertaking.

 

“In addition, he said work was underway to exploit the considerable deposits of lithium in the country, stressing that “we hope to establish, in all these new ventures, an equitable balance between our needs and the needs of the investor community.”

 

President Akufo-Addo observed that the theme for the conference, "Championing Africa's sustainable Economic Growth” was realistic enough to augment the new paradigm of transforming Africa's economy through industrialization and trade.

 

He commended organizers of the Africa Mining Indaba, describing the conference as an excellent platform that seek to bring African Mining experts to share and exchange ideas on mining.

 

Investing in African Mining Indaba is the world’s largest mining investment conference, is to celebrate how far the industry had come and discover what the future holds for African mining market.

 

The 25th Anniversary Mining Indaba brought together the largest amount of investors, mining executives and junior miners from across the globe, to exchange ideas in the value creation in mining.

 

The conference which was highly anchored, featured South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, and Ghana's President Akufo-Addo. It also witnessed 35 Mining Ministers and most influential people in African mining and across the globe.