MINING WEEKLY / 21 JANUARY 2020 - 15.55 / TASNEEM BULBULIA
The upcoming Investing in African Mining Indaba will focus on forging the future direction of the continent’s mining industry.
Under the theme ‘Optimising Growth and Investment in the Digitised Mining Economy’, key topics to be discussed at the event include green and sustainable technology, investment opportunities in African mining, resource nationalism, climate change and youth challenges.
“Some of the new innovations for 2020 are really exciting, focusing on the digital revolution and evolution of technology in society and industry.
“We have extended the Mining 2050 programme to two days – looking at a broad scope of the way that technology is informing and changing the mining industry. We are welcoming more legal voices to the Mining Indaba, with a dedicated General Counsel Forum where general counsel from many of the major mining operations can meet with local South African and pan-African law firms,” says Mining Indaba content head Tom Quinn.
One of the main topics to be discussed will be driving investment decisions in Africa’s mining sector. This will entail revisiting the fundamentals of the mining industry, price volatility and the impact of mining investment for 2020 and beyond.
It will also explore increasing gold exploration activity in West Africa, looking at what makes junior gold projects an attractive investment.
The Indaba will also tackle issues that are prevalent in the mining industry. This will focus on the aim of zero harm; land rights issues; environmental and employment law; regulatory challenges; and political uncertainty.
Resource nationalism is another theme that will be explored. This will analyse and assess exposure in current African markets and strategies to mitigate risk. It will also look at rebalancing public and private relationships; and explore how governments can find compromises that engender growth while allowing business to make considerable profits.
The Indaba will seek to find innovative solutions to increase the sustainable supply of battery metals.
Another topic will look at the challenge presented by youth; such as how the mining sector could act as a development engine across the continent. It will also look at President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Youth Employment Services (YES) initiative and how it is working.
Moreover, the Indaba will discuss the Millennial generation and how mining companies should position themselves to attract this demographic of investors.
Another topic will endeavour to map Africa’s mining industry towards a sustainable future. This will include innovation technology and data management solutions for sustainable mining; rethinking mine rehabilitation; and harmonising extraction and environment to change industry’s social image and ecological footprint.
The role of technology in the industry will also be explored, in the vein of the future of work and digitally skilled miners; automation; and digitised and supply chain and technology enablers.
The issue of climate change will also be looked at, as will possible solutions. This will explore climate smart mining – African minerals for the low-carbon future; and will also look at the legal framework of liability, insurance and sustainability.
The Indaba will also host discussions with mining Ministers from across Africa and the globe. This will include discussions around the African Continental Free Trade Agreement and its implications for energy and mining; and the responsible sourcing of African minerals.
The Indaba will also look to the future, mainly, exploring the continent’s mining sector as an engine for development; and reimagining mining by exploring what the future of work in the industry could entail.
EDITED BY: CHANEL DE BRUYN CREAMER MEDIA SENIOR DEPUTY EDITOR ONLINE
Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER