Mining hub to economic growth – Chakwera

President Lazarus Chakwera has emphasised the need for the country to start discovering opportunities in the mining sector, saying the sector can be used as a key to accelerating Malawi’s economic growth.

Chakwera made the call on Tuesday in Lilongwe during the official opening of the first ever Malawi Mining Investment Forum.

“When the first President of this country, Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda, was saying that ‘chuma chili munthaka’, we didn’t know that he was not only talking of agriculture, but he also meant of different mineral resources that the country is endowed with.

“We need know that Malawi has got natural resources that every country across the globe would want to have. The time has come for us as a country to make use of the natural resources that we have,” Chakwera said.

Chakwera then said this is the reason his administration, through the Ministry of Mining, changed the Mineral and Mines Act, which was outdated and was depriving the benefits of the people of the country to see the fruits of their natural resources.

“I directed the Ministry of Mining to establish Mining Regulatory Authority and Mining Company so that we should have vibrant Mining Development Agreement (MDA) and our own laboratories that can be used to test our own minerals in the country, rather than sending them abroad for testing,” he said.

The President went on to ask commercial banks in the country to collaborate with government in making the mining sector vibrant.

Minister of Mining, Monica Chang’anamuno said there is collaborated effort in making the mining sector vibrant in the country.

“Mining sector in the country has got potential of contributing handsomely to the GDP if we all collaborate and add value to our minerals in the country,” she said.

Chang’anamuno then announced that the Malawi Mining Investment Forum will be an annual event which will spur different investors to come into the country and invest in mining industry.

Secretary General of Africa Minerals Strategy Group, Moses Engadu, said there is need for Africa, including Malawi, to start adding value to the minerals and stop exporting the raw minerals as it has been in the past if Africa wants to benefit from its natural resources.

The Mining Investment Forum is being celebrated under the theme “Transforming the Nation through Sustainable Mineral Extraction” and it has attracted over 300 participants from African countries and beyond.

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