Reforms in Guinea’s mining sector bring hope

African Agenda, Third World Network Africa, vol. 15, no. 1, 2012

Bonnie Campbell, 15 mars 2012

Reforms in Guinea’s mining sector bring hope

A new mining code introduced in 2011 seems to hold some hope for benefits that Guinea may derive from its enormous mineral reserves,

AMONG the most endowed of the continent’s mineral rich countries, possessing the world’s largest reserves of high-grade bauxite (more than 40 billion metric tons), well over 20 billion tons of high-grade iron ore, (with 40 per cent to 70 per cent iron content), significant diamond and gold deposits, and undetermined quantities of uranium - Guinea is also among the lowest on the Human Development Index -156th in 2010.

The introduction of the new mining code adopted September 9th 2011 is certainly a welcomed development. Its enforcement and the possibility that the sector begin to contribute to the enormous challenges facing the country will depend however and among other things on the redefinition of the structural relations inherited from the past which link powerful external actors and internal decision makers in a process which in the past has been strikingly lacking in transparency.