HomeIssuesMining Review Africa Issue 5 2023

Mining Review Africa Issue 5 2023

Maximising on Africa’s critical minerals

Mining is central to the social and economic narrative of Africa, and has been a key provider of investment, employment, government revenue and infrastructure on the continent.

Tarren Bolton, Managing Editor

While the net benefits of mining are positive for African societies overall, there is still room for controversy – which links to the overall amount mining is expected to contribute to an economy, with governments developing policies designed to foster greater beneficiation.

The bottom line: sub-soil assets are sources of national wealth and extracting them from the ground can unlock their value for society as a whole and benefit local economies.

The topic of fostering greater beneficiation was the major driving force behind the recent inaugural African Critical Minerals Summit, which centred around the development of a shared vision for the critical minerals with which Africa is blessed, with the aim to foster regional cooperation and economic growth.

Minister of Mines and Energy, Gwede Mantashe drove home that it is in the best interests of Africa to develop a new mining order directed to ensure that these minerals are beneficiated at source or locally to stimulate economic growth, industrialise our economies and improve the trade balance of our continent.

On this topic in this issue, our projects focus on southern Africa. Mining has created significant forward and backward linkages in southern African economies, providing a steppingstone for the development of value chains.

Economic multipliers are significant, meaning that the benefits of mining go beyond the mining sector to create positive spillovers, such as jobs and revenue that governments use to finance infrastructure in other sectors.

In our project focus in Namibia, the Omitiomire copper project is back on track towards development, putting Namibia firmly back on the copper mining map and providing a significant boost to the country’s mining industry (page 12). Tin producer Andrada Mining is in the process of adding both lithium and tantalum to its product lineup (page 8), and on page 16, Arthur Tassell reports on Osino’s Twin Hills gold project – potentially Namibia’s next gold mine – which hugely contributes to placing Namibia on the brink of a major gold sector expansion.

Read more on page 26, where London-listed Contago Holdings, which has a 70% stake in Muchesu (the balance is held by Zimbabwean partners), has a small but focused management team on site who are all Zimbabwean citizens.

Contango has sourced all the skills they need locally and plans to grow Mushesu coal mine’s output significantly over the next several years.

Closer to home, South African junior miner Copper 360 is making excellent progress towards re-establishing copper mining in the Namaqua Region of the Northern Cape. Arthur Tassell reports on Copper 360’s prospects (page 22) and its potential to virtually double South Africa’s copper production.

I hope you find the news, views and insights in this issue valuable as we continue to strive to be your trusted source of information for, and gateway to, Africa’s mining sector.