Untapped Extractive Industry to Get New Policy, Road-map

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Addis Ababa November 4/2019 Ethiopia set to prepare a 10-year mineral and petroleum policies with a roadmap for the sector as the country aiming to fast-track its untapped mineral potential with a regulatory overhaul.

Ministry of Mining and Petroleum today held a consultative meeting with pertinent stakeholders to further enrich the draft policy and roadmap to the sector.  

Mining and Petroleum Minister, Samuel Urkato told journalists that the sector’s contribution to GDP is low compared with other sectors though the country has huge unexploited mineral potential.

Despite having a huge potential to contribute to Ethiopia’s economy, the development of oil, gas, and mineral resources are not among the key drivers of the country’s growth. 

He stated that the sector contributed only 1 percent to the GDP, 14 percent of the exports, 1 percent of government revenue and created 4000 jobs in 2018.

One of the major drawbacks has been the lack of real commitment from government side to enable the sector institutional capacity for attracting private and foreign direct investment to meet its requirement for huge investment and technical capacity, he said.

However, Samuel pointed out that the draft policy and roadmap will enable specific strategies and promoting mechanisms to exploit the sector.

Promoting local and Foreign Direct Investments (FDI), and advancing the sector with technology are also the other focus areas to unleash the country’s potential and enhance its overall contribution, he elaborated.

Moreover, it will strengthen the cooperation and collaboration of the government and the private investment within the sector.

Technology, Climate Change and Natural Resource Management Division Director at the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Oliver Chinganya said preparing the policy and roadmap is an opportunity to Ethiopia to better make use of  its mineral resources.

He further foresees that the policy and roadmap to address challenges relating to environmental and social issues as the government strives to sustain development in the sector.

Ethiopia, in its Growth and Transformation plan (GTP), has set a target for the mining sector to contribute 10 percent of its GDP by 2025.