Rwanda says it is open for mining business

Rwandan tin. (Image courtesy of the Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board).

The Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board announced that as the country moves towards recovery from the impacts of the covid-19 pandemic, the government has decided to expedite the processing of new mining license applications.  

In a press release, the state agency said it has also distributed a series of protocols to allow mining companies to resume 100% of their operations with enhanced health and safety measures for their employees. 

The Board said it will define mining and mineral exploration as a priority in Rwanda’s Investment Code. The goal is to attract international mineral exploration companies and de-risk exploration investments

“[The protocols include] adequate tunnel ventilation, de-densification, screening and testing mechanisms, require miners to put in place tracing programs, allow workers to work in shifts and provide relevant PPE, among others,” the brief states.

When it comes to small-scale mining operators, the Paul Kagame administration said it will manage them more efficiently by consolidating many of them into collective investment groups. Such groups would get mining licenses, which would be open to receive international investments. At the same time, the Board plans to formalize regional trade in minerals to support local smelters, refineries and all value-addition and export business. 

According to the media release, the focus of these measures will be on the 3TG (gold, tin, tantalum and tungsten), gemstones, rare earths, and lithium. 

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