The ECOWAS Ministers in charge of Mining and Minerals Development have adopted the Draft Regional Model Mining and Minerals Development Act at a just ended meeting in Accra. The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources for Ghana, Hon. Kwaku Asomah-Cheremeh who chaired the meeting said there was the need for Member States to harmonize their mining and mineral policies and legislations to inform investors that the ECOWAS sub-region is guided by common rules and regulations.
He said “It will also help increase our revenue, open up youth employment and help develop our independent countries’’. Citing South Africa as the only country on the Continent that has developed against the backdrop of mining, the Minister stressed that’’ This Capital Flight must stop’’ and requested member States to adopt pragmatic policies and programs as outlined in the Model Act to enable current and future generations to benefit optimally from the exploitation of their mineral resources.
The adopted document is expected to be presented to the ECOWAS Parliament in the next few days and will be considered subsequently by the ECOWAS Council of Ministers which include Ministers of Finance and Foreign Affairs of Member States before being finally approved by the Authorities of Heads of State.
The Model Act is centered on: Institutional Structures, Mining Rights and Permits, Licenses Tax Regime, Governance of the sector, Local content, Environmental Protection and Gender issues among others.