Lands Minister Orders Companies To Get Requisite Permit Or…

The Minister of Lands, John Peter Amewu has announced he will enforce strict observance of Ghana’s law by all mining companies in the country.

Mr. Amewu said even though the country welcomes foreign investors, they are not at liberty to do whatever they want. Hence he cautioned investors to conduct themselves in a manner that does not flout Ghana’s laws.

Speaking at the African Downunder Conference in Perth Australia Friday, the Minister admitted there are certain cases companies are given licenses to mine when the processes leading to the Gazetting of their permit has not been exhausted.

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“There is a process that any investor that wants to engage in mining has to go through to get the right permit,” Mr. Amewu told the gathering.

“We are going to work within the legal framework.

Mr. Amewu made the comments at a time when there is pressure on the government to reverse the revocation of three mining leases of the local mining company, Exton Cubic Group.

According to him, the decision came as the manner the permit was issued to the company flouts the Minerals and Mining Act, adding that the right environmental clearance was not secured before the mining permit was issued.

The Exton Cubic Group in its reaction has petitioned President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to overturn the decision, arguing it has done no wrong.

But Mr. Amewu insisted the processes leading to the granting of the license to the company was not transparent.

“We believe that if the process has taken its time and duration for the various permit had been within their time, this issue wouldn’t have come up,” he told the foreign investors.

He maintained the license registration should not take several days if the companies follow the right process.

“Renewal should not take time…so if delays are occurring, it will be as a result of the technical office,” Mr. Amewu added.

The Mining industry in Ghana accounts for 5% of the country’s GDP and minerals make up 37% of total exports, of which gold contributes over 90% of the total mineral exports. Thus, the main focus of Ghana’s mining and minerals development industry remains focused on gold. Ghana is Africa’s largest gold producer, producing 80.5 t in 2008. Ghana is also a major producer of bauxite,

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Since the country is Africa’s largest gold producer, as well as other minerals including bauxite, manganese and diamonds, mining activities in Ghana is a great revenue prospect for investors.

Ghana also has 23 large-scale mining companies producing gold, diamonds, bauxite, and manganese, and, there are also over 300 registered small scale mining groups and 90 mine support service companies.

Other mineral commodities produced in the country include natural gas, petroleum, salt, and silver.