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The recently concluded Kenya Mining Week (KMW) 2023 was a resounding success, leaving industry leaders and stakeholders inspired and motivated to shape the future of Kenya’s mining sector. With dates spanning from 17th to 19th July 2023, the event took place at the prestigious Radisson Blu Hotel in Upper Hill, Nairobi. This remarkable conference was organized by Kenya Chamber of Mines in partnership with AWEIK. The event was graced by various sponsors, including Platinum sponsors Planet Gold Kenya, Oxfam, and Base Titanium Gold, who played a significant role in making the event a grand success. Among the Silver sponsors were Shanta Gold, Haki Madini Kenya, Riftcot Limited, Transparency International Kenya, and Kenyan Human Rights Commission, while Bronze sponsors included Solidaridad, Africapractice, The Impact Facility, Nowata, RCInspection, and Bamburi Cement.
The PS Investments, Abubakar Hassan, during the opening session for the Kenya Mining Week, emphasized his office’s commitment to facilitate both private and public investment through investment attraction, facilitation, and enabling. He pledged to work hand in hand with the State Department of Mining to ensure investment in the mining sector and continued support for ongoing projects. Additionally, he announced the plan to add Mining as one of the main dockets catered to by the State Department of Investment, aiming to support the mining and extractives sector to significantly contribute to Kenya’s economy.
Let’s delve deeper into the highlights of this exceptional event:
1. Prospective Trajectory of Kenya’s Mining Sector:
During Kenya Mining Week, experts and decision-makers delved into the question of whether the sector’s contribution to Kenya’s GDP would rise to 10% by 2030. With strategic investments, favorable policies, and sustainable practices, the consensus is that this ambitious goal is indeed attainable. The commitment of the government and stakeholders towards responsible mining practices and inclusive growth is evident, boding well for the future of the sector.
2. Kenya’s Mining Sector Reforms:
Amid discussions about growth, there was a strong emphasis on improving economic reporting within the industry. Transparent and accurate reporting will enhance investor confidence and ensure accountability. The commitment to implement sustainable mining practices is also reaffirmed, with an emphasis on environmental conservation, social responsibility, and community development.
3. The 8Ds Plaguing African Mining Sector:
Panel discussions highlighted the pressing challenges facing the African mining sector, known as the “8Ds.” Addressing dispossession and disputes over land, environmental degradation, societal deprivation, health hazards among mine workers, and a lack of technologically leveraged safety measures is imperative for ensuring a sustainable and responsible mining industry in Kenya.
4. Panel Discussion on Technology and Access to Formal Finance:
Key areas of discussion in this panel included risk minimization, optimization through technology, and the importance of financial literacy and targeted training for small-scale miners. Strengthening guarantee systems for accessing capital and leveraging data-driven research and statistics are also emphasized. The panel’s central message underscored the need for a governance model and participatory technology development.
5. Governance Model for Artisanal and Small-Scale Miners:
The Kenya Mining Week addressed the urgent need for a governance model to formalize and regulate the artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) sector. This model encompasses licensing, transparency, risk mitigation, safety measures, and efficiency. Accessing project finance with grants from the World Bank can empower ASM workers to adopt sustainable practices, while repurposing training and adapting innovations to meet the specific needs of ASM workers remains vital.
The 2023 Kenya Mining Week was an extraordinary event that highlighted the immense potential and the way forward for Kenya’s mining sector. With a commitment to sustainable practices, responsible governance, and inclusive growth, the sector is poised to play a significant role in Kenya’s economic development. The Mining Gallery Africa is proud to be part of this transformative journey, providing high-quality information and solutions to drive the industry’s success. As we reflect on the success of this event, we look forward to continued collaboration and progress in shaping a sustainable and prosperous future for Kenya’s mining sector.