Ghana expects its mining reform program to make the mining sector a leading catalyst of economic development, Coordinator of the Multi-Modal Integrated Project (MMIP) Isaac Karikari said.

According to him, mining is also expected to boost the livelihoods of mineral-rich communities and eliminate child labor in mining.
Speaking to Xinhua on Friday during a two-day National Multi Stakeholder Workshop on the African Mining Vision, Karikari explained that job creation, especially in mining communities, would be the key economic benefits Ghana could derive from the implementation of the project.

The project, which is expected to cost 200 million U.S. dollars, will see the Ghanaian government funding 20 percent while development partners provide 50 percent of the total, with the rest coming from Public Private Partnership (PPP) sources.

“A strong capacity building is another key content in the reform program with the Minerals Commission, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC), and Water Resources Commission as part of the implementing agencies,” Karikari said.

The five-year project to be launched by President Nana Akufo-Addo next month has five components, namely review and enforcement of legal and regulatory regime, reclaiming degraded lands, dredging silted water bodies, and free lands for agribusiness.

It also has a social intervention component that will facilitate livelihoods creation in mining communities.

“The social interventions component seeks to eliminate the worst forms of child labor, eliminate prostitution and teenage pregnancy in mining communities, eliminate conflicts in land use, eliminate mine-related accidents and pre-mature deaths in mining,” the coordinator said.

The environmental and health benefits, according to Karikari, include: “reversing the pollution of water bodies, reverse the uncontrolled use of mercury in mining, reduce the excessive land degradation as a result of mining as well as reduce the deforestation and loss of farms to mining.”

According to him, the project document being developed through the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Minerals Commission and the JFK Consultant was completed and going for printing. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh