Mining sector: Local content rules to retain 3.1trn/- at home

By Guardian Reporter , The Guardian
Published at 08:06 AM May 23 2024
Minerals minister Anthony Mavunde
Photo: Guardian Reporter
Minerals minister Anthony Mavunde

A TOTAL of 3.1trn/-will be retained locally in annual mining sector procurement by more explicit requirements relating to local content, Minerals minister Anthony Mavunde has declared.

Addressing delegates at the third local content forum which focused on the participation of Tanzanians in the mining sector, he said that these requirements will be part of the country’s efforts in attracting industrial investments.

“I know levies exist and have their own procedures, but our priority is more focused on this area,: he said, underlining that as purchases in the minerals sector reached more than 3.1trn/-last year, if this money remains in Tanzania, it will have a sharp impact on the country’s economy.

He expressed the view that Tanzanians need to take advantage of opportunities in the mining sector, as the 3.1trn/- needs to be retained locally.

The Mining Commission has been instructed to prepare a list of imported products from abroad through a procurement plan “so that we can find the foreign manufacturers to invest in Tanzania for Tanzanians to benefit from such opportunity,’ he specified.

Underlining the need for large miners to buy products from Tanzania, he said that in Kahama District, Shinyanga Region the East African Conveyors Ltd produces conveyor belts that are supplied to North Mara, Barrick, Bulyanhulu and even in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

“This is a company that has entered into a joint venture with Tanzanian youth,” he stated, elaborating that Max Steel, producing rock holding devices, wire mesh and bolts, is now finalising the construction of a factory for localised production.

“An international firm, Rock Solutions, a drilling and blasting company, has its tools factory 90 percent complete, such Tanzanians are expected to start seeing many products produced in the country,” he said

He said interpreting Vision 2030 includes the need for 30 percent of the surface area in Tanzania being put to in-depth surveys, as currently there is expertise to identify areas with minerals “but we are yet to know the quantity. When you know the quantity, it becomes easier to plan,” he elaborated.

So far only 16 percent of the total area has been researched, while local content in the mining sector created a total of 18,853 jobs in 2023, an increase of 2,391 jobs over the previous survey, a 14.5 percent increase, he said.

He reiterated government plans to transform Buzwagi area in Shinyanga Region to a special economic zone for the processing industries to add export value considerably, to all export bound minerals.

“A total of 1,331 acres of land has been allocated in Kahama waiting for investors to come and build industries," he said, signalling that eight large manufacturers have already shown interest to invest in the area.

Msafiri Mbibo, the deputy permanent secretary, said that ensuring that Tanzanians are involved in the mining sector demands that goods and services produced by Tanzanian firms are prioritized.

Receiving and reviewing the local content plan for higher approval, supervision and consent over the provision of procurement agreements for products and services for mining license owners and service providers in the sector are key agenda issues at present, he added.