ADDRESS BY THE HONOURABLE JEFF RADEBE, MP, MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY FOR
PLANNING, MONITORING AND EVALUATION; AT THE MINING INDABA MINISTERIAL SYMPOSIUM;
WESTIN HOTEL GRAND BALLROOM, CAPE TOWN
you, Programme Director:
cabinet Colleague, Minister of Mineral Resources, Mosebenzi Zwane
and Deputy Ministers Present here
are gathered here shortly after an incident that shook South Africa’s mining industry
to the core. Close to 1000 mineworkers were trapped underground at the Sibanye
Gold Mine in Theunissen, Free State province, a couple of days ago.
unfortunate incident is said to have been caused by a massive power cut
following a storm that hit the area. It was a huge relief and immense pleasure to
learn that all the mineworkers who were trapped were brought to the surface by
Friday morning. We thank the workers for
their courage and commitment during this ordeal. We also extend our gratitude
to their loved ones for their patience during the rescue process.
are also indebted to the rescue workers and the management of the mine for
ensuring that there were no fatalities and that all the workers were brought to
safety. We must in the same breath, acknowledge that this incident should never
have happened. We must take very strict precautionary measures to ensure that
such incidents do not occur in the future. I trust that the mining executives
and all other relevant stakeholders will investigate the matter and take
punitive measures if there was any act of negligence.
must always bear in mind that where there are no workers, there can be no
mining. The lives of the mineworkers must come first. Their lives matter. Our
own icon, the late President Nelson Mandela, was once a mineworker at the Crown
Mines in Johannesburg. As we celebrate the Year of Nelson Mandela in what would
have been his 100th birthday, let us ensure that we establish a
lucrative mining industry that is beneficial to all. Let us advance the spirit
of goodwill, fair labour practice and mutual beneficiation in the mining
South African mining industry has been the cornerstone of our economy since the
discovery of gold and diamonds in the nineteenth century. Despite the
challenges we have encountered in recent years, I strongly believe that this
industry has a great potential to play a meaningful role in creating a better
and more prosperous South Africa in the foreseeable future.
people of South Africa adopted the National Development Plan (NDP) as the
overarching plan of the country. The NDP, our Vision 2030, recognises mining as
a strategic industry with a great potential to create a more dynamic, inclusive
and faster growing economy by 2030. The NDP aims to ensure that all South
Africans attain a decent standard of living through employment creation,
elimination of poverty and reduction of gross inequalities in our society. The
mining industry can be a major catalyst for us to overcome these challenges.
is a symbiotic relationship between South Africa’s NDP, the continent’s Agenda
2063, and the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It is in
this respect that I am pleased with the growing stature of the Investing in Africa
Mining Indaba. I recognise this Indaba as an important annual forum for
governments and businesses in the mining sector to have candid debates and
collectively seek strategies to grow our mining sector and, by extension, the
economies of African countries.
event has become an annual pilgrimage for the key stakeholders in the industry
across the continent. This augurs well with our vision as the South African
government and for the African continent as a whole. Our objective is to
promote active participation and support of key stakeholders in the mining
sector in order to steer the industry towards a sustainable development
trajectory. We must ensure that the exploitation of our mineral resources
benefits the host nations and that the environment is protected from permanent
mining sector is a strategic sector that has been targeted to contribute
towards the continent’s socio-economic growth plans. In 2009, the AU Summit
adopted the Africa Mining Vision, which is a strategic plan to ensure the
sustainable exploitation of the continent’s natural resources.
continent is enriched with a variety of mineral resources, yet multitudes of
our people are languishing in the doldrums of poverty. Africa Mining Vision is
positioned as Africa’s own response to tackling the paradox of mineral wealth
existing aside by side with poverty in many African communities. It is through
the implementation of this blue print that Africa can steer its mineral sector
towards a sustainable trajectory.
Africa Mining Vision encourages the development of a knowledge-based African
mining sector that catalyses & contributes to the broad-based growth &
development of, and is fully integrated into, a single African market. It also envisages
a sustainable and well-governed mining sector that effectively garners and deploys
resource rents that are safe, healthy, gender and ethnically inclusive, environmentally
friendly, socially responsible and appreciated by surrounding communities.
mining sector can become a key component of a diversified, vibrant and globally
competitive industrializing African economy. In order to achieve this vision,
African governments need to use their mining laws to implement it while
explicitly expressing their individual national requirements for domestic and
international investors to exploit their mineral endowment.
regulatory frameworks should be clear and transparent with easy to understand
licensing arrangements, which guarantee investors security of tenure supported
by a transparent legal process. Investors should be assured that their
exploration and mining rights will allow them to develop projects which will allow
them to trade their produce on profitable terms. At the same time, regulatory
regimes must be used to transform ownership and ensure a much more equitable
distribution of mining value created for citizens.
on the report on a recent study by Deloitte on Mining in Africa, there is approximately
thirty mining projects to be developed on the African continent by the end of
2018, totaling an estimated minimum of 18 billion US dollars. Most of these are
expected to reach full production by 2018 across different commodities,
including Nine copper mines, Four gold mines, Four diamond mines, Three coal
mines, Three platinum mines, Two uranium mines, One iron ore mine, One nickel
mine, One zinc mine and One potash mine. Approximately 10.5 billion US dollars
has already been spent on these projects, with about 29% invested in South
Africa, 23% in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), 8% in Mauritania, 8% in
Namibia, 8% in Zimbabwe and 7% in Zambia.
development of mining projects cannot be the sole domain of the mining investor.
African mining countries and mining corporations must establish long term sustainable
partnerships that are beneficial to both shareholders and citizens of the host
country. Mining must create a nexus between meeting shareholder expectations, stable
regulatory regimes, sustainability and supporting the attainment of the host
nation’s development objectives, the socio-economic contribution and investment
in the people residing near mining operations, investment in local development
projects using various instruments aimed at localizing the mining sector’s
benefits. This enables mining projects to play a crucial role in supporting national economic development aspirations
through a shared vision.
day corporations rely on a social contract with their social partners to ensure
their operations are accepted within society.
To fully comprehend the social license to operate all stakeholders of a
mining company this includes directors, financiers, fund managers, investment
advisors need to ensure a Social Due Diligence (SDD) has been conducted
successfully before and continuously during the life of a mine to ensure
uninterrupted and successful business practice.
basis of a social license to operate is premised on micro level details as
opposed to a higher level approach and a need for mining companies to get a
better understanding of the local environment,
to ensure the fair and transparent sharing of the Mine’s benefits with
the local population, to have a clear understanding of land rights, to
understand competing interests between illegal and artisanal miners, to be
aware of the potential environmental impacts which may emanate from the mining
project and to safeguard the mining company’s reputation from other communities
where it also has operations.
entities have already nestled this awareness within their businesses by
establishing Sustainable Development (SD) or Corporate Social Responsibility
(CSR) departments and publishing their socio economic development programs in
their annual reports for society to recognise their socio-economic
central role is to ensure mineral resource exploitation contributes towards
long – term political and economic stability. The African Mining Vision is such
a vehicle to take us there, as it recognises
government’s role in the integration of the mining industry into a nation’s
economy through the development of mineral linkages to other sectors of the
economy and the advancement of the country’s geo-surveying capacity.
we deliberate in this Indaba, I trust that we will be able address difficult
questions relating to the rapid changes brought about by new innovations in the
mining industry. The increasing rise of Electric Vehicles is contributing to a
global demand of cobalt and the associated plug in car battery storage
solutions has boosted the global demand for lithium. While this is exciting, we
must understand what it means for traditional minerals such as those used in
our traditional fuel emitting vehicles, platinum being used in catalytic
converters to decrease fuel emissions.
must ask ourselves how will we manage the impact on jobs as a result of lower
demand of the conventional commodities and how companies will deal with the
negative impact on the value of their portfolios. The Investing in Africa
Mining Indaba is such a convenient platform for governments and the private
sector to deliberate on such pertinent issues in the mining industry. We must
objectively assess the impact of mining in our economies and plan its future
growth on the continent.
my capacity as the Chairperson of the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) for the
Revitalisation of Distressed Mining Communities and Labour Sending Areas, I
will do my best to unblock any obstacles to development and steer the sector
towards the attainment of our collective vision. As leaders of various African
governments, we must harmonize our efforts and cherish a common vision for the
mining sector. We must garner increased foreign direct investment and establish
a strong relationship with the mining companies working on the continent that
promotes our social and economic goals
are in need of increased trade and investment in order to be on par with the
growth targets as set out in the NDP, the AU Agenda 2063, as well as the UN’s Sustainable
Development Goals. The more thriving our mining companies are in business, the
better the economic standing of their countries.
the mining industry flourish to inspire rapid economic growth in Africa!