The Sierra Leone mining sector is reviving following a significant decline in the Ebola outbreak, with 16 cases reported since 15 April, compared with a total of 3 900 deaths since April 2014.
Local mining company Sierra Rutile is the perfect example of this having announced a USD$77 million investment entailing the start-up construction of the Gangama dry mine project. The project will be developed in two phases, each a separate 500 tph operation.
Chief executive John Sisay says the sector should begin reinvesting as prices for some commodities stabilise and Ebola virus disease (EVD) cases continue to decline.
Gold Saint Resources, an alluvial diamond miner, has confirmed it too will begin exploration activities at two sites while kimberlite mining company Stellar Diamonds has also applied for exploitation permits and must begin operations at its Tongo-Gyke 1 site within 90 days.
The Chinese Shandong Iron and Steel Group, which bought out African Minerals (and the Tonkolili iron ore project) plans to resume operations this year. Together with Sierra Leone’s other largest iron ore miner London Mining, African Minerals first entered administration after the Ebola outbreak coincided with a global fall in iron prices.