Mining Companies In Tigray to Resume Exploration, Production Work Soon

Addis Ababa July 20/2023(ENA):-The Ministry of Mines has announced that activities are well underway to enable companies engaged in mineral exploration and production in the Tigray region resume operations soon.

Various international mining companies have already given confirmation to resume operation soon.

During the war in northern Ethiopia, various development activities, including the mining sector, were disrupted and suffered several damages. 

However, development activities and provision of services have been restored due to the stability created following the peace agreement.

ENA has talked with the Minister of State for Mines, Million Mathews, regarding the activity in the Tigray region, especially in the exploration and production of gold and other minerals.

According to him, international companies that were engaged in mineral development and exploration in the region had faced challenges due to the war. However, he said there are opportunities now to restart mining exploration and development. 

He also explained that the peace agreement signed  by the government of Ethiopia and the TPLF in Pretoria, South Africa to end the war and bring lasting peace signed has brought great relief to the stakeholders engaged in the mining sector, he added.

As a result, favorable conditions have now been created for the companies engaged in the production and exploration of gold, cement and other minerals in the Tigray region to resume operation to work, the Minister of State said.

Messobo cement factory has already started operations; he said, adding efforts are also being underway to let other companies to resume the exploration and production of mining. 

''We are making efforts to help companies that were already in operation in the Tigray region to resume work. Before the war, some big name international companies were under mining exploration in Tigray. Since peace prevails now, we want those companies to come and start activities, visit the area. There are many things that have been damaged because of the war. We have frequent discussions with companies about the possibility of restarting operations.''

The State Minister recalled that some gold factories in the region previously produced up to 900 kilograms of gold and supplied it to the central market. He also said that they are working with the interim administration of the region to bring back those factories to their former production capacity.

For this purpose, the gold bank in the Shire has been reopened and experts have also been assigned to restart the gold procurement system, he indicated.

He further elaborated that the interim administration has taken strict measures against individuals engaged in illegal acts in the sector.

The law enforcement action will give confidence to the licensed miners, he said.

According to him, international mining companies, including Newmont, which is  famous in the international gold mining sector in the region, have confirmed that they  will resume their operations soon.

Ethiopian News Agency