29 August, 2017
Johannesburg, 29 August 2017: The Mining Industry Association of Southern Africa (MIASA), an association of chambers of mines in the SADC region held its biennial elective meeting in Victoria Falls on 25 August 2017. MIASA is pleased to announce the election of Mr Isaac Kwesu: Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe as President; and the election of Mr Roger Baxter: Chamber of Mines of South Africa as Vice President.
The immediate past president, Mr Simon Tuma-Waku: Chamber of Mines of the DRC thanked the members for supporting him during his tenure as MIASA President and congratulated the newly-elected office bearers, wishing them the best as they continue with the lobbying work of the association in the region.
In accepting his role as MIASA President, Mr Isaac Kwesu thanked members for the confidence they bestowed on him and stated that he looked forward to the support of all the members in continuing the work of MIASA especially in this period in which the mining industry is faced with a variety of challenges.
Mr Batirai Manhando, President: Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe, welcomed the delegates to Zimbabwe and wished them a pleasant stay and successful deliberations at the meeting. Mr Manhando was present throughout the meeting as an interested observer, while the Zimbabwe Minister of Mines, Mr Chidakwa, made an appearance to greet the MIASA members at the meeting. Mr Chidakwa used the opportunity to state the challenges faced by his government with regard to social license to operate, engaging with mine communities and the relationship between government and the mining industry. He further referred to the efforts made by his government to promote investment in mining in Zimbabwe and how he would like to work closer with the mining industry to create an environment for sustainable mining. He was encouraged by the work of MIASA, saying that it was a good platform for mining ministers in the region to engage with the mining sector to address the challenges that would make mining sustainable in the region. Mr Veston Malango: Chamber of Mines of Namibia thanked Mr Chidakwa for his efforts to travel from Harare to meet MIASA members, expressing that he was encouraged that the Minister was already working closely with the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe. Mr Malango added that the good working relationship between Mr Chidakwa’s Ministry and the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe serves as a model relationship between government and the mining industry for the SADC region.
At this meeting MIASA noted the legislative challenges that the mining industry faces in the SADC region that have a negative impact on direct investment as well as lower than expected growth of the sector as a whole. To address some of these challenges MIASA has decided to champion dealing with the trust deficit between governments and the mining industry in the region as part of its lobbying role. MIASA hopes that that it will get a positive response from the Committee of Ministers of Mines in the region when it requests their audience through the SADC platform. MIASA has further committed itself to work closely with the Southern African Business Forum (SABF) with the intention of influencing SADC governments through the ministers of mines in the region towards ensuring the sustainability and growth of the mining sector.
MIASA was encouraged by the declining number of injuries and fatalities in the region as reported by the members, and further encouraged members and mining companies in particular to consistently work towards zero harm.
MIASA supports the initiative of creating a single voice of the private sector mining in the whole of Africa and to represent this voice at the African Union. To this end, MIASA has set itself the goal of championing the formation of the Association of Chambers of Mines in Africa to ensure that the single voice of the mining industry in Africa is able to influence the 2063 agenda of the African Union.
MIASA is committed to the success of the mining sector in the region as it the foundation for socio economic growth of most countries in the SADC region and in Africa as whole.
Executive Secretary: MIASA
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