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Sudan will revoke all dormant gold mining licenses: minister

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January 20,2016 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese Ministry of Mining has threatened to cancel licenses of companies that stopped work under what it (the ministry) called “pretexts of security threats.’’

FILE - Smoke rises after a blast in a quarry at the Ariab mine September 28, 2011 (Reuters)

Mining minister Ahmed Mohamed Sadiq al-Karouri Wednesday announced that his Ministry is about to conduct a comprehensive review of the performance of contracted companies.

“We will cancel the concessions of companies that fail to abide by the terms of their contracts and open the way for serious companies,’’ Karouri said in a speech before the council of ministers of the Blue Nile state.

“The Ministry is on its way to cancel concessions of companies that hesitate to start activity in the Blue Nile State. The state government has now pledged to provide security in mining concessional areas,’’ he further said.

The Blue Nile State’s Governor Hassan Yassen pledged during his government’s meeting to protect the activity of all mining companies if those companies adhere to their commitments to aid social programmes, as stated in their licenses.

“When due security is put in place, there will be no excuse for the licensed companies to stop work,’’ said Karouri .

According to the Ministry’s records , 351 mining companies are operating in the mining industry countrywide, including 60 mining firms that operate in the Blue Nile State which is classified the fourth sate in term of attracting mining compagnies.

Karouri further called for optimum exploitation of mineral resources , warning against what he called :“falling in the trap in which some African countries had fallen into when their resources were looted by multinational companies’’ .

“We have to tighten control over these resources,’’ he said.

Karouri has boasted that his ministry had fulfilled 100% of it commitments towards the finance ministry.

He said his ministry had disbursed 70 million Sudanese pounds which were used to buy the share of foreign shareholder in the Ariab gold mining company , that operates in the Red Sea region.

Accordingly , said Karouri , the Sudanese government has acquired all the capital of Ariab company.

Karouri has said his ministry had also managed to collect all of Sudan’s dues from the other mining companies.

Last December, the minister pledged in a speech before the National Assembly to increase gold production to reach 100 tonnes.

Sudan’s total gold production in 2014 was 73.4 tonnes, of which mining companies produced 9.7 tonnes while traditional mining contributed 63.7 tonnes.

Meanwhile, the minister dismissed reports that the government was seeking to stop the activity of traditional miners , saying that all what will happen is that the government will effect a wide and well organized supervision of traditional mining.

ST

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