Kenya to form state-owned mining company

The Kenyan government announced last week it will form a national mining corporation, reports the Daily Nation.

The state-owned company will handle joint ventures with the private sector.

Najib Balala, the government's cabinet secretary in charge of mining, also said a new mining bill will ensure mineral investments work in the public interest.

The act will allow the cabinet secretary to regulate the sector in a transparent manner.

Balala said the there is a provision for the government to take up to 35% of shares in mining companies. Observers speculate the percentage will change once private interests are taken into account.

The new law also covers smoothing the licencing process for investors, conducting studies and ensuring community participation.

The cabinet is in the process of developing the bill before it is sent to the parliament for debate and adoption.

Kenya's current mining act dates from 1940.

The country has resource potential that includes iron ore, coal, gold, silver, copper and rare earths.

Image: Shutterstock.com