Africa is rich in mineral resources, including precious metals, however, it has struggled to fully capitalise on these resources due to a lack of investment and inadequate infrastructures.
Dr Rokhaya Samba Diene, OAGS president, signed the agreement with ambassador Albert M. Muchanga, commissioner for economic development, trade, industry and mining representing the AU. Through this agreement, the AU and OAGS will provide technical and financial support for geological surveys and mineral resource management projects in Africa.
Minister of mineral resources and energy, Gwede Mantashe, said during the 2023 Investing in African Mining Indaba that, “This initiative will breathe life into the Agenda 2063 vision of the African Union.”
The AU and OAGS plan to work together to identify potential investors and provide them with the necessary information and support to invest in the continent. This includes providing geological data and analysis to help investors identify potential mineral resources and assess the feasibility of mining projects.
“The MoU between the AU and the OAGS is an important step towards promoting socioeconomic integration and development in Africa. By fostering collaboration between the two organisations, the MoU aims to support sustainable development and mineral resource management in the region. This will help to ensure that the benefits of mining are shared widely among local communities,” said Diene.
“We will also collaborate in areas of geoscience mapping, geological information systems and other areas of mutual interest,” she said.
The partnership also aims to collaborate in advancing the continental programme, such as the PanAfGeo and other Africa-based geoscience initiatives. The PanAfGeo-2 (2021-2024) project is a continuation of the PanAfGeo-1 project, which took place from 2016–2019, coordinated by the EuroGeoSurveys (EGS) and co-funded by the European Union. PanAfGeo-2 aims to strengthen African geological surveys through the development of innovative geoscientific training programmes in partnership with OAGS.
The project also focuses on capacity building and training for African countries to improve their ability to manage and sustainably use their mineral resources,” said Mosa Mabuza, CEO of the Council for Geoscience (CGS) and secretariat of OAGS.
“As African business leaders, we continue to believe in the continent’s potential and remain committed to playing our part in the socioeconomic recovery process by promoting investment in Africa's mining sector,” he said.