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Half of Tanzania ‘to be mapped for minerals by 2030’

Dar es Salaam. Tanzania plans to conduct in-depth geophysical investigation to cover at least 50 percent of its territory by 2030 to identify mineral potential.

According to Minerals Minister Anthony Mavunde, in the next financial year through the Geological Survey of Tanzania (GST), the government will facilitate a geophysical survey of almost 18 percent of the territory.

Currently, only 16 percent of the country’s land has been surveyed and by identifying more mineral reserves, the government is seeking to increase the revenue generated by the sector.

The minister was speaking at the mining sector stakeholders forum in Arusha.

“In the next fiscal year, which starts in July 2024, parliament approved a project to conduct an in-depth geophysical survey on two blocks with a total area of ​​165,574 square kilometers,” Mavunde said.

“This will lead to the establishment of many large mines and significantly increase opportunities.”

Mavunde said this is important as the mining business continues to struggle with last year’s data indicating that minerals worth over Sh3.1 trillion were purchased from different markets and purchasing centers across the country.

“In 2023, minerals worth $3.55 billion were exported, representing 56.2 percent of non-traditional goods sales, compared to exports worth $3.39 billion, or 56 percent, in 2022 (approximately 7 trillion shillings).

“This is the contribution that the sector made in the last fiscal year, and there are not even ten mines. What happens if we complete the comprehensive investigation? Tanzanians will have the opportunity to access various services and products and the economy will grow,” Mavunde added.

Stakeholders will be in Arusha for three days to discuss the opportunities and challenges related to local participation in the mining business in Tanzania.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Chairman of Parliament’s Mining and Energy Committee, Kilumbe Ng’enda, said that in the minerals business, local content and corporate social responsibility (CSR) are key as they serve as social license to operate.

“The public themselves grant you the license based on the relationships you have with the citizens, and as a committee we have been emphasizing this issue and we congratulate the government for emphasizing it,” he told the stakeholders.

Ng’enda emphasized the essentiality of capacity building for local companies, including equity financing through banks, and expanding the scope of service delivery to stimulate local participation in the mining business.

For his part, Minerals Deputy Permanent Secretary Msafiri Mbibo said one of the main objectives of the 2009 Mineral Policy is to integrate the mining sector with other economic sectors.

“In implementing this, the ministry has the responsibility to prepare, manage and implement the mining policy to ensure its success for the overall benefit of the country,” he said.

One of the tasks, he said, includes influencing the participation of Tanzanians in the mineral value chain for the benefit of the nation.

In his ministerial budget speech in Parliament on April 30, Mavunde also revealed that the mining sector’s contribution to national income for the third quarter (January to September 2023) reached 10.9 percent, compared with 9.5 percent during the same period. in 2022.

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