Be responsible, mining industry urged

27 April 2017 | Business

B2Gold Namibia’s managing director, Mike Dawe, has advised that the government should not become involved in mining.
He made the comment at the just-concluded mining expo at a Business 7 event organised by Namibia Media Holdings this afternoon.
“There are instances in which Epangelo mining should be applauded but the government should not become involved in mining activities,” he said.
According to Dawe, government investment in mining has not always yielded the desired outcomes, making reference to countries like Australia.
He also said that B2Gold was looking to the future of its mining operation and called on the sector to be more protective of the environment.
Suggesting that mining companies should be a lot more conscious when it came to the environment, he said: “You cannot take from the earth, we must also give back. If you finish you cannot simply leave.”
Dawe also suggested that while not yet implemented, the New Equitable Empowerment Framework was near catastrophic. “The first draft was a catastrophe.”
Drawing attention to export levies, Dawe said: “It is still an issue, with all the royalties the average mining company pays over 50% to government while diamond companies pay over 80% of their revenue over the government in export levies.”
PwC Africa chief executive officer Hein Boegman expressed concern about the outlook for mining, suggesting that commodity prices would remain flat for the foreseeable future. He warned about mining companies’ liquidity.
On the social front he called for mining companies to be more responsible. “One of the challenges is the social environment; many people think that big business is bad. The mining industry will have to build up that trust.”
OGONE TLHAGE

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