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It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to Bulletin n°2 of the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme. The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States is proud to be supporting knowledge exchange in the minerals sector. Industrial minerals, construction materials, dimension stones and semi-precious stones can, with greater attention and the right policies, be drivers of domestic economic development.

This past week, the African Union Commission hosted Ministers Responsible for Trade, Industry and Mineral Resource development in the First Ordinary Session of the Specialized Technical Committee on Trade, Industry and Minerals (STC-TIM) in Addis Ababa. The meeting acknowledged the support of the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme and affirmed the role these minerals can play in Africa's social and economic structural transformation. It is our hope that through the program a lot will be learnt and lessons can be shared across the ACP for more inclusive and sustainable minerals sector development.

Mr. Viwanou Gnassounou

Assistant Secretary General for Sustainable Economic Development and Trade, African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States


In this issue we report back on recent workshops in Ghana, Jamaica and Guyana; we share new opportunities for you to get involved; and we take a closer look at some of the programme focus countries. From Cameroon's housing sector to Guinea-Conakry's infrastructure, ACP Member States are experiencing the benefits of a renewed focus on the minerals and materials that can contribute most to domestic development.

Dr. Daniel Franks
Chief Technical Advisor & Programme Manager, ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme, United Nations Development Programme


Central Africa Regional Workshop on Environment, Community, Health and Safety in the Neglected Development Minerals Sector, Brazzaville, Congo, 19-22 July, 2016.

The mining of Neglected Development Minerals can have significant social and environmental impacts with consequences for the health and safety of workers and surrounding communities. The Programme is holding a 4-day regional training workshop for participants from the following countries of Central Africa: Cameroon, Congo Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon and Rwanda, in addition to Madagascar.

Applications due: 14 June 2016
Download the application form: English / French


The ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme is looking for a creative graphic designer with a sharp attention to detail. If this is you or someone you know submit your application here (applications close 12 June).

Back to Base: Reframing the role of industrial minerals and construction materials in Africa’s resource development strategy. African Union Commission, Addis Ababa, 17-20 October

The ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme is partnering with the African Mining Legislation Atlas (AMLA) Project of the World Bank Group, the African Union Commission and the the African Legal Support Facility to host an international research symposium to assess the opportunities and challenges of beneficiation, mineral processing and value addition in Africa.

Deadline for abstracts: July 1.
Download the application form: English / French


Submissions are invited for a trainer to support the delivery of the Central Africa Regional Workshop on Environment, Community, Health and Safety in the Neglected Development Minerals Sector, Brazzaville, Congo, 19-22 July 2016. French-language applicants are eligible to apply. Submit your application here (applications close 12 June).

Limestone is not a famous Jamaican icon, in the same way as Blue Mountain coffee, Appleton rum, Trenchtown reggae or the beaches of Montego Bay. Like so many industrial - 'non-metalic' - minerals the contribution of limestone to Jamaica's economic and human development is hidden.

In collaboration with Jamaica’s Mines and Geology Division of the Ministry of Transport and Mining, a National Consultation Workshop was held on 14 – 15 April, 2016 in Kingston, Jamaica, to build awareness about the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme; gather information on Neglected Development Minerals in Jamaica; identify sectoral linkages and opportunities for partnership and business creation; and develop a

roadmap for the implementation of the programme.

The key note address was made by Dr. Alwin Hales, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport and Mining; while other addresses were made by Mr. Achim Schaffert, Head of Operations, Delegation of the European Union to Jamaica, Belize, The Bahamas, Turks and Caicos Islands and Cayman Islands;  and Mr. Clinton Thompson - Commissioner of Mines. The 58 participants drawn from public, private and civil society sectors contributed to the road map which will guide the multi-year work plans for the project.

Read More: Jamaica and UNDP: Mining development and success in the minerals industry
CLICK TO WATCH VIDEO: H.E Raphael Trotman, Minister of Natural Resources Guyana states importance of the training workshop during Occupational Health and Safety Month in Georgetown, Guyana.

Georgetown, Guyana played host to the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme, Caribbean Regional Training Workshop on Environment, Community, Health and Safety, which took place from 18 – 21 April. The workshop was a key event in Occupational Health and Safety Month in Guyana after a number of recent workplace fatalities in the mining sector. Forty-three participants attended from the Dominican Republic, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago. Several high-level speakers made remarks at the opening

ceremony including: His Excellency Raphael Trotman, Minister of Natural Resources, Guyana (pictured above); Ambassador Videtič, EU Head of Delegation; Dr Douglas Slater, Assistant Secretary General, Human & Social Development, CARICOM Secretariat; and Ms. Khadija Musa, UN Resident Coordinator / UNDP Resident Representative, Guyana. The field trip to BK Quarries along the Mazaruni River, enhanced critical reflection and knowledge sharing on the issues affecting the quarry sector.
The housing deficit in Cameroon is significant. The Government of Cameroon has highlighted the need to construct an estimated one million homes in the next 5-10 years to meet the housing needs of a growing population that is increasingly urbanised. A Prime Ministerial circular of 2014 – strengthening the provisions of an earlier 2007 circular – has compelled contracting authorities to incorporate local materials in the construction of public buildings across the country. This has led to a partnership between the Local Material
Promotion Authority (MIPROMALO) and the Ministry of Public Works (MINTP) to popularize and promote the use of local materials by construction companies. Local construction materials such as gravel, sand, clay and lime as well as dimension stones are poised to play a crucial role in meeting the local housing demand; and supporting the transition of Cameroon into a middle-income economy.

Read More: Africa Housing Financing Yearbook, 2015

Guinea-Conakry is one of the world's top bauxite producers, but it also has the potential to realise the opportunities of mining industrial minerals and construction materials. In the past five years, the country has overcome political and economic challenges and successfully dealt with the impact of the Ebola Virus Disease. Despite the positive outlook, infrastructure challenges and the informal nature of industrial minerals commodity development limit the scope of information available on the contribution of these minerals to the economy.

Guinea-Conakry is one of the six focus countries of the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme.

A roadmap is under development to guide the programme implementation. Quarries in areas like Dubréka and Manéah are a source of income for rural communities and have the potential, if formalised and properly managed, to meet the demands of a growing urban populace. Furthermore, there is scope for stronger economic linkages with large-scale infrastructure projects such as Simandou Project’s rail, port and ancillary infrastructure, as well as Kaleta’s multimillion dollar hydropower plant, which according to Bloomberg (2015) will almost double the West African country’s energy output and supply neighboring countries such as Guinea-Bissau, Gambia and Senegal. 
PHOTO: Training participants during the field visit to a limestone quarry run by West Africa Quarries Limited (WAQL)

Accra, Ghana was the venue of the third Regional Training Workshop on Environment, Community, Health and Safety, 15-18 March, 2016. The workshop – co-hosted with the African Union Commission, ECOWAS, the Minerals Commission of Ghana and the African Minerals Development Centre – brought together 58 participants from 12 West African countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo). The opening ceremony for the workshop was led by Hon. Nii Osah Mills, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources of Ghana

who stressed the economic and social importance of industrial minerals to Ghana and the region. His opening speech was preceded by remarks from Mr. Vinassou Gnassounou, Assistant Secretary General, ACP Secretariat (video speech); Mr. William Baidoe, ECOWAS;  Mr. Johannes van der Ploeg; Infrastructure and Sustainable Development Section of the EU Delegation in Ghana and Mr. Mulugeta Abebe, UNDP Deputy Country Director for Ghana. Similarly, the field visit to three quarrying sites (see picture above), helped the workshop participants to concretize the lessons learnt.

In the recent past, the mining sector in Rwanda has witnessed unprecedented growth. This is particularly so, in relation to construction materials and dimension stones whose demand has risen sharply to meet the needs of the housing sector. A rise in the number of quarries serving the construction industry has signaled a need to enforce standards and regulations in quarrying.

The Ministry of Natural Resources hired an expert to design safety standards in Mining under the Strategic Capacity Building Initiative. The expert was to work

with a local counterpart to develop this important document for the small-scale mining sector. The local counterpart for this exercise is Sam Ryumugabe, who was sponsored by the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme to participate in the 2016 edition of the Emerging Leaders in African Mining (ELAM) programme.

The skills and knowledge acquired by Sam during ELAM 2016 were instrumental in ensuring that health and safety standards for small-scale quarrying operations were included in the recently developed draft Mining Standards and Regulations under review in Rwanda.
PHOTO: Sam Ryumugabe talking about Rwanda’s natural resource endowment at the ELAM 2016 program in South Africa.
[or why your denim jeans are better made of garnet than made of sand]

Garnet is a group of closely related minerals that display a wide variety of colour ranging from deep red and orange to green and purple. While Garnet is popularly known as a semi-precious stone, it is mostly used as an industrial mineral. Harder species of garnets such as Almandine are used as abrasives and in water jet cutting. Garnet is also used in water filtration.

With increased awareness of the occupational health and safety risks associated with sand-blasting, industrial garnet is replacing silica sand as an abrasive in many parts of the world. Silica is not as hard or inert as garnet and silica produces hazardous dust during blasting that can cause silicosis and other serious health problems. Even while sand-blasting has been outlawed in Europe since the 1960s, it is still a technique used in textile manufacturing in some countries, to give denim jeans a pre-worn look. Investigative reporting has found that sand blasting is still in the supply chain of some popular jeans brands, while other brands have recently ruled out the practice.

Industrial Garnet (USGS; Donald Olson) | Levi’s and H&M end sandblasting | Sandblasting still used in jeans factories | Fair Trade Centre - Report on sandblasted denim
Angelique Gatsinzi is a final year PhD student at the University of Surrey, UK, and an intern with the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme. The aim of her research is to re-examine the child labour debate in the artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) sector in sub-Saharan Africa, using Ghana as a case study. Through her study and her work for the programme she hopes that she will contribute to future policy dialogues on child rights in Africa and also provide a case for the on-going ASM formalisation debate. 
LinkedIn | Research Gate
Twitter: @angeikuzwe

RECENT PUBLICATION: A Rocky Road Ahead? Critical Reflections on the Futures of Small-Scale Mining in Sub-Saharan Africa Hilson G. and Gatsinzi A. (2014)

African Development Bank: From rocks to industries: How can the extractive industries be a platform for African industrialisation? 
Pietro Toigo

The EU and Responsible Global Value Chains (Council Conclusions)
General Secretariat of the Council
The ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme is a 3-year, €13.1 million capacity building program that aims to build the profile, and improve the management, of industrial minerals, constriction materials, dimension stones and semi-precious stones. Often referred to as 'Low Value Minerals and Materials', these minerals are in fact high value for domestic economic development. To reset the debate and shed the pejorative connotations associated with 'low value' the programme uses the term Neglected Development Minerals. The program is an initiative of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States, financed by the European Union and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and implemented by UNDP. The aim is to: 1) increase the sector’s productivity; 2) better manage mining operations; 3) adhere to national and international environmental and health standards; and 4) prevent conflict through effective community relations. Implemented at both the regional and country levels the programme includes: training; small grants; the production of maps and databases; review of legislation and policy; organization of community dialogues, technology fairs and networking events.
Copyright © 2016, UNDP, All rights reserved.
Bulletin #2: 2016. Contact us:

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