Botswana cautions mineral speculators

After hosting the first ever Botswana Economic Forum (BEF) last month, the country brought captains of the mining industry to Gaborone for the annual Botswana Resources Conference.

Various speakers who were lined up for the conference included Keith Jefferis of E-Consult, representatives from African Copper, Albidon, ACAP, Discovery Metals, Hana Mining, Aviva and Homeland Energy. African Copper is developing the Mowana Mine outside Dukwi village.

Speaking at the Botswana Resource Conference, the country’s Mineral and Energy Minister, Ponatshego Kedikilwe, said that the government was happy that companies had been able to sustain themselves.

Kedikilwe, however, warned that companies which did not meet the cut would automatically have their licences withdrawn.

“However, we are concerned about the rampant speculation in the market if it goes unchecked. Closer to what is going on on the ground . . . if they fail, the licences have to be withdrawn.We will have to deal with them kindly and diplomatically and where firmness is required, we will have to do so,” he said.

He said Botswana could not allow speculators who would fail Botswana and the investors. It was unreasonable to sit on land while there were serious investors waiting.

The Botswana Resources Conference is aimed at honestly exchanging views on matters concerning the economy of the country.

In its fifth edition, the conference is meant to benefit local and global resource institutional investors. It aims to provide an insight into developments in Botswana’s resource sector.

The conference comes at a time of heightened activity and anxiety in the country’s mining industry.

August 2008
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