Workers in mining and Extractive Industry have been reminded that while tourism production has declined sharply due to the COVID-19 epidemic they must fill the gap in the country’s foreign exchange earnings, TOPAFRICANEWS reports
Prior to COVID-19, the tourism sector was in the forefront of foreign exchange earnings, with mining coming in second.
The Deputy Director General of the Rwanda Mine, Petroleum and Gas Board (RMB), Dr. Twagirashema Ivan, said the country is now looking at mining to close the gap created by COVID-19 impacts on tourism sector.
He made the remarks at a meeting between the miners and the Southern Province administration on October 13, 2020 in Muhanga District.
Challenges raised by miners at the meeting included the suspension of licenses as they began to invest in sustainable operations and the delay in issuing licenses to applicants.
Rugamba Robert, a representative of the miners in the South, says it is difficult to invest in sustainability when they are not sure if they will have a new license.
Dr. Twagirashema called on miners to change their mind and invest in mining and increase productivity.
He added that all should comply with mining and quarrying regulations.
The RMB administration said the issue of speeding up the license is going to be resolved soon.
Twagirashema said, “We have been working on the licenses of the people who applied for between 2016 and 2019. What we have decided is that the licenses that were in those years should be completed by December ”
He added that they would try to shorten the licensing process so that the applicants could get the results as soon as possible.
He said no one would miss a suitable excavation site because even if he was not given the place he asked for, there was another place where the excavation could take place
The Mayor of Nyanza District, Ntazinda Erasme, says that in order to solve some of the existing problems in the field of mining, they are going to strengthen cooperation with various companies.
He pointed out that the problem of mines that have no one to exploit them is one of the most urgent issues to be addressed by handing them to the miners who are able to exploit them
Southern Province Governor Kayitesi Alice said the partnership is a positive step forward.
Rwanda has set a goal of generating $ 1.5 billion by 2024, which will be achieved through public-private partne299