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Inside state plans to revitalize the mining sector to boost revenue

The government has affirmed its’ commitment to streamline the mining sector to be a key driver of to the economy.

Mining, Blue Economy and Maritime Affairs Cabinet Secretary Salim Mvurya introduced a raft of sweeping reforms to revive the sector.

Mvurya says the once-dormant National Mining Corporation received a budgetary allocation of Sh349 million for the financial year 2023/2024.

The National Geological Survey, CS Mvurya divulged is at 95 percent with only the blue spaces that have not been looked into showing the country is endowed with resources

“We have a responsibility to inspire the economy through mining. The country has enormous mineral resources,” said CS Mvurya Friday when alongside PS for Mining Elijah Mwangi met Heads of Departments at the Kenya School of Government (KSG) Mombasa campus.

Mvurya said the government aims to increase revenue from the mining sector from the current one percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to ten percent in the next three years.

“We have just concluded the geo survey report which has identified 970 mineral occurrences across the country. We have been able to identify key minerals across the 47 counties.

We have now embarked on a process of ground trothing to be able to quantify and see the economic value of our minerals,” said CS Mvurya.

Key value addition centers have been identified across the country in line with the mining value addition and mineral processing policy.

“The establishment of the value addition centres aims to reduce the amount of exported raw for example in the building industry Kenya has sufficient limestone and gypsum where we can process clinker, we don’t need to import clinker from other countries,” said CS Mvurya adding that jobs will be created in the mining sectors.

Artisanal miners will be organized into cooperative societies to access training and linked with financial institutions to have purchasing power of modern mining equipment for mineral exploration.

To curb smuggling of mineral products CS Mvurya said Madini House will be upgraded to be a modern laboratory and lab services will be decentralized to all mining regions.

The Ministry plans to cancel 1,500 dormant licenses and await cabinet approval. “In our analysis of the cadaster we have found out that there are quite a number of people who are holding licenses which we have now categorized as inactive,” revealed CS Mvurya.

The Ministry will collaborate with the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) and Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) to introduce transit checks and containers transporting minerals will be sealed at the point of source and opened at the point of exit to prevent alteration of documents.

“All rogue officials who have been doing that will be brought to book so that they can be accountable to the public and the government,” warned CS Mvurya.

By Sadik Hassan

 

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