Kenya through the Ministry of Mining stole the show, by displaying valuable gemstones at the just concluded 15th Africa  Down Under Conference held in Perth Australian from 06-08th September 2017. Many delegates thronged the Kenyan stand to get a glimpse of the valuable real gemstones that were exhibited at the stand.

This was a major attraction as only Kenya out of over 23 countries exhibited real gemstones during the Conference that attracted close to 1,000 delegates. A number of potential investors made inquiries about the gemstones and investment opportunities in Kenya.

The Kenyan delegation was led Dr. Ibrahim Mohamed, the Principal, Secretary Ministry of Mining who called on investors to maximize  from the attractive investment opportunities and incentives that the Government of Kenya has put in place to facilitate sustainable mining  and related services in the Sector.

The Ministry booth was strategically located at the entrance of the main auditorium where the conference was held.  It was the only stand with real gemstones that glittered throughout and thus attracted delegates who thronged to not only admire them but also make inquiries about the stones and mining opportunities in Kenya.

In addition to the displays, the Ministry had give-aways in form of brochures, branded pens and flash dicks detailing mining activities and opportunities in the country.  Officer(s) were always on standby to attend to the endless flow of visitors who called at the Ministry’s stand.

He said Kenya, like many African countries was endowed with great mineral wealth that is yet to fully explored and exploited for the benefit of the people of Kenya, stakeholders and investors in the Sector.

The PS gave a comprehensive presentation on the milestone and prospects in the Sector.  The Conference was also attended by His Excellency Isiya  Kabira, the Kenyan High Commissioner to Australia who hailed Kenya’s achievements so far made in the Sector and the splendid displayed to show case just a tip of Kenya’s mineral wealth.

Dr. Mohamed highlighted some of the major mining attraction that affords a conducive and sustainable atmosphere in the country these, he said include  the Mining Act 2016, which is lauded  as one of the most progressive mining laws in Africa ,the regulations that seek to facilitate the implementation of the Act, the Mining Policy and related regulatory frameworks, that  is a panacea for  sustainable and lucrative investment.

 

Australian Minister lauds Kenya’s achievement in the Sector
Meanwhile in the same event, Hon. Julie Bishop, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, hailed Kenya among other African countries for their commitment to develop the mining sector in Africa.  She further lauded the delightful partnership between Africa nations and Australia, adding that there is an expanding program of events linking our universities, business, policy and cultural communities and institutions.

Hon. Bishop signed out Kenya’s milestone in the Sector, using Base Titanium, an Australian Company based in Kwale as a case study, the Minister said that the impact of investment in Base Titanium Kwale Mineral Sands operation was unparalleled.  She said that Base Titanium and its contractors have employed more than 900 people, most of whom are Kenyan. “Base plans to continue its operations at Kwale at this level for another ten years, directly contributing an estimated 1 billion US dollars to Kenya’s economy”, she paused.

The Minister appreciated the partnership between Kenya and Base Titanium saying that upon completion, Base will hand over to the local authorities a working dam, operational boreholes, an electrical system, a road and port.

Hon. Bishop accentuated the importance of a sustained partnership saying that Kenya seeks to benefit from the Australian Government and Australian value-fashion group, CottonOn who will assist Kenya in establishing an ethical cotton production in Kwale. Under this arrangement, local small scale holders will be assisted to supply cotton for clothing and to sell cotton seeds as animal feeds. Similarly, CottonOn will also purchase and export the cotton bringing in benefits of global value chains, the supply chains, to women and men of Kwale with an ultimate aim of having 10,000 profitable small scale cotton farmers in the local region by 2020..

 

Grace Owitti

 

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