Rwanda: Mineral Exports Hit US$40 Million

Rwanda: Mineral Exports Hit US$40 Million

Wednesday, August 9th 2006

Mineral exports hit a record US$ 40 million (Frw 22.4b) in 2005, the Director of Mines and Geology, Fidel Uwizeye, has disclosed. Uwizeye made the disclosure during a recent one-week workshop on environmental laws, policies and techniques, held in Musanze District.

He said that the increase in mineral export earnings from US$ 28 million (Frw 15.94b) in 2004 is in line with the government’s efforts to boost the mining sector.

“Proper conservation of minerals to increase foreign earnings requires efficient expertise from geologists for the public to be acquainted with the magnitude of national income from mineral resources,” he said.

Citing the role of 2005 national policy to promote the mining sector, Uwizeye noted that restructuring of mining procedures and limited issuance of mining concessions are some of the factors that led to the steady increase of foreign earnings from minerals.

He also underscored that the sustainable mining of mineral resources that match with environmental protection strategies is inevitable.

“This helps public to identify value of mineral resources, and resourceful procedures for revenue generation,” Uwizeye said and pointed out that the development and prospects from minerals shows the need for the country to setup mineral related industries.

He added that the committee set up by the ministry to harmonize mineral resources promotion and environmental conservation has proposed the setup of national authority, whose statute is before Parliament.

“It will help to carry out research around the country to identify quantity of mineral resources in reserve,” he said.

He further pointed out that the authority, once established, would guide the small-scale miners to form cooperatives in order to strengthen their capacity to acquire mining techniques.

“This necessitates government to have full control on mines to lease them to individuals or company for mineral extraction,” Uwizeye added.
Copyright © 2006 The New Times. All rights reserved.

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