I can’t quite grasp the fact that 2019 is almost over – I’m not sure where the time went. Despite its fly-by, a number of prominent moments that have left their mark on the year are definitely worth mentioning.
Because I don’t have the space here to go into much detail on every prominent event, let me direct you to our Mining Indaba Special Report in which I and my editorial team have identified the top five biggest trends that have influenced the mining sector in 2019. Read them for yourself and let me know if you agree.
I do however have the space to include those key events that have shaped our industry over the past 12 months that we didn’t include in the report, and localisation comes straight to mind.
It may not be a new concept but it is quickly becoming a non-negotiable in Africa. We must support local businesses in the countries we choose to operate in. Yes, I understand that a lack of skills can make this difficult but there are ways to overcome this challenge and we need to take that up!
Sustainability and community participation/livelihoods received equal priority attention in 2019. Again – this has been on mining companies’ agendas for years but the focus on this deliverable has been ramped up significantly.
Ensuring a long-term sustainable future that focuses beyond the mine is essential, as is the importance of involving local communities and affording them the opportunity to learn new skills and create sustainable livelihoods for themselves – during and after a mine’s operational lifecycle.
In response, mining companies are begging for good governance practices from local authorities. This seems a fair request and one that took discussion precedence over the year.
Times are still tough
The investment world keeps saying there is money to be spent on good projects but mining companies are still battling to secure cash to build their mines. Investment criteria has changed but if you’re onto a good project then why are you struggling?
I’m not sure I have the answer to that question as yet but I’m hoping to address it in greater detail in our January 2020 edition – so stay tuned!
To brighten your day – we are ending this year on a high note and present you with four projects that have in spite of trying times made significant progress over the year – proving that it can be done.
Read from page 16 to find out who they are.
From myself and the entire Mining Review Africa team, best wishes for the last days of this year and the new year that lies ahead. May it be a properous one for us all.