The African mining industry rose to the occasion during 2020 with many companies implementing pro-active responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, while others impressed with innovative technological feats that not only assisted in the longevity of their operations, but also to their contribution to the local communities.


Not only focusing on the bottom line but also incorporating softer strategic goals clearly paid off, says Laura-Jane Cornish, Editor-in-Chief of Mining Review Africa, leading magazine and digital platform in the African mining industry and the annual edition of Mining Elites in Africa, which launched this week.

“Print is far from dead”

“This year Mining Elites in Africa chose to focus on mining companies who, through an extremely difficult time, have made a difference, for their own sustainability and on an even greater level, to the countries in which they operate and the economies they contribute to.”

She adds: “some of the aspects that make this selection of mining projects and people stand out are also linked to the ESG principals of environment, social, and governance, which have become a driving factor for the mining industry.”

A 128-page glossy edition available in print and electronic format, it features dozens of exclusive leadership profiles with industry pioneers and project updates.

The Mining Elites in Africa 2021 also received significant financial support from the industry which is a testament to the publication’s strong brand and its own ability to flourish during times that have seen many trade and mainstream media titles go under.  

“Let it be known”, says Cornish, “that print is far from dead, as our Mining Elites in Africa 2021 has proven!”

Leaders making a difference

The following industry influencers on the continent, who are innovative in their leadership approaches and strategies to improve the greater mining and minerals value chains on a regional level, were chosen to be in the spotlight to share their vision:

– Errol Smart, MD, Orion Minerals
– Johan Ferreira, CEO, Khoemacau Copper Mining
– Steve Phiri, CEO, Royal Bafokeng Platinum
– Sébastien de Montessus, CEO, Endeavour Mining
– Nolitha Fakude, Chair, Women in Mining Leadership Forum & Chairperson, Anglo American South Africa
– Francis Gatare, CEO, Rwanda Mining, Petroleum and Gas Board
– Fortune Mojapelo, CEO, Bushveld Minerals
– Thuthula Balfour, Head of Health, Minerals Council South Africa
– Lindsay Linzer, Principal Consultant and Associate Partner, SRK Consulting SA

Staying in business strategies

Three mining projects were selected as having implemented “staying in business strategies during a difficult market caused by the global pandemic”.

These are Kenmare Resources’ relocation of its Wet Concentrator Plant at its Moma titanium minerals mine in northern Mozambique, relocating Exxaro’s Matla 1 coalmine to extend its life of mine and the approval of the Kapstevel South project at the Kolomela iron ore mine in the Northern Cape.

Power supply

In the category of “Power Design and Delivery,” a planned 36 MW solar plant with 92 000 solar panels will ensure a more stable power supply at B2Gold’s Fekola mine in Mali. Staying in Mali, Resolute Mining’s Syama gold mine will install one integrated power solution, combining solar, battery and thermal generation technologies while reducing carbon emissions by about 20%.

And Ivanhoe’s ambition to become the world’s “greenest” copper miner drew nearer with Kamoa-Kakula’s plan to draw its electricity from three existing hydropower plants in the DRC with a combined capacity of 200 MW.

Health and safety

AngloGold Ashanti is lauded for its successful malaria control programme that it launched at the Obuasi mine in Ghana 15 years ago. It has drastically cut the incidence of malaria at the plant and in the surrounding communities and the infection rate is continuing to decline.

Meanwhile, De Beers has responded to COVID-19 with a range of measures at its global operations with possibly the most impressive initiative being the establishment of a COVID-19 testing laboratory at its Venetia mine in South Africa’s Limpopo province.

And according to the Mining Elites in Africa 2021, Royal Bafokeng Platinum has outdone many of its industry peers in terms of its response to COVID-19, delivering a hospital to support the fight against the pandemic. The company converted an unused mine in the North West province into a well-equipped 200-bed field hospital for its employees and community.

Other categories of mining practices that made a difference during 2020, are in:

  • Exploration
  • Greenfields project development
  • Brownfields expansion
  • Research and academic breakthroughs
  • ESG (Environment, Social & Governance) contributions
  • Building sustainable communities
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Digitalisation and automation technologies

The 2021 edition of Mining Elites in Africa is available for free online on Mining Review Africa or contact the editorial staff for a print copy.

Industry support

Worley, a leading global provider of professional project and asset services in the energy, chemicals, and resources sectors, is the main sponsor of Mining Elites in Africa 2021.

Other partners include AECI Mining Explosives, BME, Chemvulc, Consulmet, Council for Geoscience, Fluor, Fraser Alexander, Guardrisk, Invincible Valves, Knight Piésold, Loesche SA, METC Engineering, Orica, SRK Consulting SA, Wärtsilä and Weir Minerals Africa.

Clarion Events Africa

Mining Review Africa is a brand of Clarion Events – Africa (previously known as Spintelligent), a global business-to-business event organiser and publisher. The brand benefits from unique relationships with key industry events within the African mining portfolio including DRC Mining WeekNigeria Mining Week and Africa Mining Forum as well as the energy portfolio, including Enlit Africa (formerly African Utility Week & PowerGEN Africa), Future Energy Nigeria and Future Energy East Africa.

For partnerships for the 2022 edition, contact:

Rochelle Botha | Sales Director
M: +27 762877624

Vuyisa Mfobo | Brand and Sales Specialist
T: +27 21 001 3885 | M:+27 66 305 7203