Museveni Calls For More Minerals Exploration

President Yoweri Museveni while addressing the cabinet at the closing ceremony of the ‎leadership retreat that has been taking place at the National Leadership Institute, Kyankwanzi called for more exploration of prospective minerals in order to develop the mining sector.

“Develop the mining sector through more exploration so as to provide more raw-materials for minerals’ based industries (cement, steel, copper products, fertilizers, alloys for steel such as manganese, carbon, chromium, nickel, tungsten, etc).” the President advised.

The President was presenting a paper on ‘Fast Tracking the Industrialization and socio-economic transformation of Uganda’ under which he emphasized the need to interlink sectors in order to reduce costs of production and enhance effectiveness.

The President pointed out that with lower transport costs, lower electricity costs, lower water costs and lower labour costs, Uganda remains with two bottlenecks that could sabotage industrialization efforts. These are the high costs of money ─ high interest rates and wrong tax policies – and the bottleneck of human resource skilling gap.

The mining sector in Uganda has not taken as per its potential partially because of lack of cheap capital to invest in exploration and production of minerals. The mining sector is also filled with artisanal miners who lack capital and skills to develop and add value to the abundant minerals.

Statistics from the ministry of Energy and Mineral Development in 2014 indicated a steady increase in Uganda’s mineral reserves. Energy Minister Irene Muloni speaking before a Joint Sector Review meeting for the ministry of Energy and Mineral Development at Speke Resort Munyonyo in 2014 said iron ore deposits had hit 116 million tonnes with a net value of $16bn.

The minister reported a total of seven million ounces of gold that was discovered in Busia, Ibanda and Mubende with $11bn. Muloni also announced an increase in vermiculite reserves rising to 55 million tonnes, from five million tonnes. The minister also reported increase in other minerals.

Uganda is home to minerals like cobalt, gold, copper, iron ore, tungsten, steel, tin, diamonds, salt and vermiculite, limestone, marble, mica, graphite, beryl, chromite, lithium, columbite tantalite, kaolin, diatomite, nickel kyanite, feldspar, gypsum, phosphates, salt, sand and clay among others.

Stones Attract Italian Investors

A delegation of Italian entrepreneurs, through their company called Intercominvest, while meeting President Yoweri Museveni last week expressed interest to exploit granite and marble minerals in Uganda. The two natural resources are major materials in the sector of building and road construction.

President Museveni told the leaders of Intercominvest Company that spearheaded the delegation that granite and marble should be used in building and construction of municipal roads, walkways and small urban street roads in the country as well as floors of houses. 

The Ugandan leader advised the visiting Italians to visit areas of Kibaale district in the Bunyoro Sub-Region where they will be able to appreciate the abundant crop of rocks that could be of great use in their construction work.

Granite and marble are part of the different types of minerals spread across the country offering improved prospects of wealth creation, employment, and security.

The Intercominvest is a family construction company that was founded in 1987 by Franco Del Maestro and Remus Minchella. Del Maestro was part of the delegation that met President Museveni at State House in Entebbe.

The company took steps to work in Africa when it established itself in Equatorial Guinea after the year 2000 as a leader in the field of civil construction, industrial, institutional and in all public and private construction sectors from architectural, structural and plant engineering, among others.  

Leaders Eye Kaolin Mining In Rakai District

The economic fortunes of Rakai district in Southern Uganda will turn around for the good if efforts by local leaders to revamp mining of kaolin are realized, reported quoting local leaders.

A retired UPDF officer, Major Mugumya Erasmus Magulumaali, also  a former Member of Parliament of Kooki constituency in Rakai district, has vowed to see that koaling mining takes off.

Kooki is key to vast deposits of Kaolin that is used in the manufacture of pottery, bricks, cement, ceramics, paints, plastering material, color lakes (insoluble dyes), and insulators.

It is also used as a main component of porcelain in toothpaste and as a light diffusing material in white incandescent light bulbs. According to Magulummaali, if the mineral is exploited the Kooki community will gain and the entire country.

In already established institutions like Kamengo technical Institute located in Kooki, ceramics courses can be initiated so that technical people are trained to do the necessary work especially if there is an industry to process different items.

‘Some investors had earlier on promised to embark on mining of the mineral and later establish an industry to process and deliver finished products.  ‘We want the Kooki people to gain in this project by being employed so as to earn a living’, the Investigator News quotes Mugulumali.

Robert Benon Mugabi the LC V Chairperson promised to work hand in hand with Magulummaali explaining that he has already contacted investors who are ready to embark on the project and also identify more minerals in Kooki and Rakai district.

‘These investors will also purify our natural water of Lake Kijanebarola as it is pumped to the different areas surrounding the lake’, explained Mugabi.

Unregulated Artisanal Miners Block Mining Opportunities – Museveni

Uganda is blessed with numerous mineral resources but has not made a giant step towards fully exploiting the natural gifts. At the moment only artisanal miners are largely trying to exploit the vast resources however President Yoweri Museveni believes these locals must be regulated and coordinated.

The President was speaking during the State of the Nation Address on Tuesday at Serena Hotel in Kampala. He illustrated that unregulated and illegal artisanal mining will block great opportunities that would have led to industrial mining, processing and refining which bring in much more money, transfer of technology and create more jobs.

The President is of the view that artisanal mining, exploration, industrial mining and processing as well as refining must be harmonized and live together. “The artisanal miners should, therefore, get organized so that we can assist them to make jewellery from our gold. However, you cannot make jewellery unless you purify the gold which takes us back to the issue of the Gold Refinery,” he said.

The president scorned at the continued trade of raw minerals yet more money can be made from the minerals if value is added to them through processing and refining. He says that adding value to these minerals can also generate jobs for people and fight unemployment. He advised that artisanal miners need to be monitored and guided so that they do not become a problem.

At the moment, a few value addition projects are ongoing including a Chinese company in Sukuru hills, near Tororo, working on producing phosphate fertilizers, sulphuric acid and steel. That facility, once fully developed, will generate annual income of the magnitude of US$306 million and create 1,800 jobs.

The president promised that similar operations will be done at Kilembe, Butogota in Kanungu, Muko in Kabale, Namekhera in Bugisu.

The president now wants scientific exploration by licensed people to continue, a functioning and fully quipped laboratory at the Minerals Department that should conclusively analyse samples so as to determine the exact content of the minerals and presence of capable large scale investors that they directly mine and process as well as buying from the regulated and licensed artisanal miners.

Karamoja To Get Gold Refinery

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni speaking at this year’s State of the Nation address, which was also the second sitting of the first session of the 10th parliament, at Serena Hotel Kampala, revealed that government will build a cement factory and gold refinery in Karamoja sub region to add value to the minerals in the area. 

He said countries like Uganda, Tanzania, Congo, South Sudan export unpurified gold for which US$970 per ounce is earned yet more money can be got if the mineral is purified before export. The president revealed that an ounce of purified pure gold goes for US$ 1,212 when exported.

Karamoja sub region, located in north eastern Uganda, alongside most parts of eastern Uganda (Mbale, Busia, Bugiri, Namayingo) have scattered deposits of gold and other commercially viable minerals that are yet to be fully extracted. The little gold from that part of the country is produced through artisanal means by local people.

“Therefore, the artisanal mining needs to be monitored and guided so that they do not become part of the haemorrhage,” the president said in his speech. He said these artisanal miners should be regulated and what they are harvesting should be known and recorded.

“At the same time, three things should be happening. One, exploration by licensed people should continue. Nobody should stop properly equipped scientific exploration to continue,” he added.

A gold refinery, as the president has promised will go a long way in elevating the value of gold mined in the region. President Museveni said ‘our gold should make fine jewellery and create jobs for our people.’

Karamoja, a dominantly pastoral region, turns to gold to earn a living. The artisanal mining is mainly conducted by women and children using rudimentary methods and tools. It has health implication to the miners which must also be addressed. The promise by the music comes as good music to the people of Karamoja.


Mining Expos To Expose East Africa’s Potential


The global mining fraternity will later this year descend on East Africa to see what the region has to offer in terms of natural resources and what can be done in terms of exploration, production and mineral trade.

The Minexpo Africa is holding two high level mining expos, one in Kenya and another in Tanzania to expose the region to the world as a budding investment destination.

Minexpo Africa Kenya and Minexpo Africa Tanzania will take place 10 - 12 June, 2016, at The Dome,Nairobi - Kenya and on 02 - 04 July, 2016 at Mlimani Conference Centre, Dar-es-Salaam respectively.

The expos, taking two days each, will showcase some of the latest technology in the mining & processing of minerals, earthmoving, safety equipment and much more that can be used in industry within the region.  

Tanzania's mining industry is expected to reach $1.28 billion in 2015 according to a study by Business Monitor International (BMI). This means the country needs ample preparations, technology, know-how to handle the boom.

The country is the 4th largest gold producer in Africa after South Africa, Ghana and Mali. Gold production currently stands at roughly 40 tonnes a year, copper at 2980 tonnes, silver at 10 tonnes and diamond at 112670 carats.

In total the mining sector contributes 2.8% to GDP each year but this could rise considerably in future years, with Business Monitor International (BMI) forecasting average annual growth in the sector of 7.7% between 2011 and 2016. BMI also predict a doubling in value of the sector between 2010 and 2016, from US$0.64bn to US$1.28bn.

Minerals that have been identified in Tanzania include gold, iron ore, nickel, copper, cobalt, silver, diamond, tanzanite, ruby, garnet, limestone, soda ash, gypsum, salt, phosphate, coal, uranium, gravel, sand and dimension stones. Read more about Tanzania.

The Minexpo Africa is the only show with the widest range of the latest technology in the mining & processing of minerals Industry. The events will satisfy the expectations of clients to the mining companies. Latest technology and machinery from the areas of mineral extraction, earthmoving, safety equipment and much more, are presented.

The exhibition provides a common platform for both local and international exhibitors, professionals, buyers and delegates who share a common outlook in the industry. Mining is one of the core sectors that drives growth in the East African continent in terms of infrastructure and economy.

Not only does it contribute to GDP, but acts as a catalyst for the growth in other industries such as constructions, power & energy and industrialization.

The future of the mining sector in Africa lies in laying emphasis on scientific mining so that state of the art technology & machinery is used for exploration, efficiency and safe mining practices.

Lake Albert Gas To Facilitate Iron Ore Processing In Kigezi


The great Kigezi region in western Uganda will get a big iron ore smelting plant, president Yoweri Museveni told a political rally in Nfasha village, Kacherere Parish, West Rubanda constituency, Kabale district. 

Museveni who is seeking re-election as president of Uganda said the region is rich in mineral resources that can be exploited to transform and enrich the country. “Rubanda is rich in iron ore resources. The NRM Government wants to build a big iron ore smelting plant. 

The gas from Lake Albert will be delivered to Butogota and the neighbouring areas to facilitate the processing of iron ore,” he said, adding that the target was to produce and process one million tons of iron per day. 

The president revealed that the resources available were sufficient to cover a period of 45 to 50 years. The country, according to Museveni, would benefit a lot because the processed iron today fetches US $ 550 per ton. 

However, his competitor and former close ally, former Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi during a presidential campaign rally in Kabale district faulted his former boss for failing to make deliberate efforts to process the iron ore. 

Aerial geological surveys conducted by the Geological Surveys and Mines Directorate GSMD in Kigezi sub-region show that there are 200 million metric tons of iron ore deposits are in the region. This means Uganda can potentially get US$ 110 trillion. 

"Currently, we have over 200 million tonnes reserves of hematite iron ore in southwestern Uganda and 60 million tonnes of magnetite iron ore in the south eastern part of the country and still have huge potential for exploration,"  Francis Natukunda, a senior geologist at Uganda's Department of Geological Survey and Mines, is quoted by New Vision saying.

According to Natukunda, if the iron ore is extracted, it would not be exported, but rather used domestically to fuel demand for steel in the construction industry. Uganda banned iron ore exports in 2012. 

“Uganda’s geographical position gives it access to over 500 million people, including COMESA and SADC and the recent population surge in the countries forming these regional blocks will trigger demand for construction materials from our industries,” state minister for investment, Gabriel Ajedra Aridru told a sector conference in Kampala last year. 

Iron Ore is a key raw material in making steel. Local steel makers like Roofings have shown interest in making significant investment into exploration, mining and processing of iron ore to add values and eventual exportation.

Museveni said his Government would extend electricity from the Muko junction off the Kabale – Kisoro road to benefit a number of places in the area including Muko, Nfasha, Rubanda Mission, Ikumba Health Centre,nBugyera, Ruhuriza and Kiyabe.



Uganda Targets 4,356 Megawatts By 2035


Uganda has set an audacious electricity production target of producing 1,974 megawatts by the year 2020and 4,356 Megawatts by 2035. This, according to President Yoweri Museveni will bring down the cost of electricity in the country.

Uganda currently produces about 700 megawatts including 250-megawatts from Bujagali Energy Limited, 200 megawatts from Kiira Power Station, 180 megawatts from Nalubale Power Station and many other small power plants spread across the country.

 “By building Karuma, Isimba and a number of small mini-hydros, our generation capacity will, by 2020, stand at 1,974 megawatts compared to the 60megawatts of 1986. With Ayago, our generation capacity will go to 4,356 megawatts, by 2035.” President Museveni said in his New Year address to the nation.

He added: “I am glad the power from Karuma will be 5 US cents per unit. The one from Isimba will be 4.8 US cents per unit. Unfortunately, the one from Bujagali has been 10.1 US cents per unit.”

The high costs of electricity have been a stumbling block for manufacturers. They say expensive electricity makes production expensive.

They then transfer the cost to their customers through pricing. This according to manufacturers makes them uncompetitive in the market. This therefore comes as good news.



New Mining Set For December Parliament Debate

A new mining law to be debated by parliament starting December promises to improve the environment for investment and generally enhance Uganda’s mining sector.

“We hope to have a new law for debate in Parliament by December,” Peter Lokeris, the State Minister for mineral development told the annual general meeting of the Uganda Chamber of Minerals and Petroleum (UCMP), an outfit that brings together players in the petroleum and mining sectors last week.

Hon. Lokeris said the new law is part of an ongoing review of Uganda’s fiscal and regulatory framework intended to “reshape the future” of the country’s mining sector.

Government has been reviewing the Mining Act, 2003 and Mining Regulations, 2004 to align them with the revised Mineral Policy

The reviewed framework aims to address several issues that have haunted the sector including; conflicts over competing land uses, the rise of unregulated artisanal and small scale mining activities and the inadequate enforcement of health and safety provisions.

The new framework also aims to increase productivity and the creation of new mines by establishing financing mechanisms for artisanal, small scale and large scale mining. It is hoped that the new policy will further improve mineral revenue collection and management and usher in a transparent competitive bidding system.

UCMP’s Chairman, Elly Karuhanga, welcomed the review as part of the continuous efforts by government to create a favourable environment for investment in extractives.

“The review of the laws and regulations for the mining sector, removal of taxes on exploration for oil, gas and mining investments and the continued energy and infrastructure development efforts are all the much needed interventions to address the bottlenecks in our sector,” Karuhanga told the meeting.

Karuhanga also hailed government for heeding calls by UCMP to reconsider the ban on mineral exports, which he said had affected the sector. President Yoweri Museveni lifted the ban in August this year.

SOURCE: Oil In Uganda

Mining Policy, Law And Taxation Review Progressing Well

The Ministry of energy and Mineral Development (MEMD) is in the process of reviewing the mining legislation. Consultative meetings to review the Mineral Policy, Law and taxation are being held to collect ideas and other necessary input.  


With technical Assistance and support of the World Bank, the Ministry has compiled the views of selected Ministries and Government agencies and those of the Industry, Civil Society and other Stakeholders in form of a Green Paper for the Minerals and Mining Policy for Uganda.

It summarizes the problem, issues and needs of stakeholders. The revised document will then be put on the MEMD website for public comments. The Ministry is now preparing a Cabinet Memorandum to submit the Policy revision proposal and policy principles to cabinet to take a decision for approval.


 Mining in Uganda

Uganda lies within the African plate, which is a continental crust that contains Archaean cratons that date at least 2700 Ma. The country’s geology is endowed with a wide variety of minerals.

Mining involves extracting and processing economically valuable minerals. Many minerals are mined in Uganda, including gold, tin, gemstones, limestone, clay, salt and stone aggregate.

However most bits of mining are carried out by artisanal miners who are not well equipped. There is no commonly accepted definition of artisanal and small scale mining (ASM), because it can have very different characteristics at every site!

The country's mining history is recorded in the 1920s with work done at southwest Uganda's tin and tungsten deposits. In the following decade, gold mining began near Busia.

In the 1950s, the Kilembe copper mine was developed and it became the country's largest mine. The 1950s and 1960s was an important phase for mining when it had a 30 percent contribution to the total exports of the nation.

During the late 1980s, laying of roads led to increase in demand for construction material. The National Mining Commission was formed in 1988. North Korea financed the Ugandan government's project to rehabilitate the Kilembe copper mine.

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