Leveraging the Africa Mining Vision to Unlock the Sustainable Development Dividend


24 February 2023

Notable strides have been made by Zimbabwe to leverage mining for sustainable development given the progress towards the US$12 billion mining economy by 2023. With Zimbabwe poised to play an influential role globally in the supply chain of green energy minerals, mainly lithium, a key component in the manufacturing of batteries required to power Electronic Vehicles (EV). Good mineral resource governance is more critical than ever. In the diamond sector, Zimbabwe is taking over the Chairmanship of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS), a global tripartite forum involving governments, industry, and civil society. The revamped draft Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill is in the pipeline.  As a key mining country in the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) region and Africa, it is imperative for Zimbabwe to be a torch bearer in the implementation of the Africa Mining Vision (AMV). Rightly so, Zimbabwe’s National Development Strategy acknowledges that the governance of mineral resources must be finetuned for the nation to optimally benefit.

Since its adoption in 2009[1], stakeholders are increasingly realizing the value proposition of the AMV as an effective framework for designing a resilient, effective, and well governed African mining sector. At the core of the AMV is the enhanced contribution of the mining sector to Africa’s sustainable development and industrialization based on aspirational objectives of transparent, optimal and equitable exploitation of mineral resources. Several developments have taken place since the adoption of the AMV aimed at strengthening its implementation. These include the development of the Country Mining Vision Guide Book, and African Minerals Governance Framework (AMGF)[2] and the establishment of the Africa Minerals Development Center (AMDC) , the adoption of the African  Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (ACFTA) and the ongoing development of an African Green Minerals Strategy.

The Africa Minerals Development Center

The African Union Assembly Heads of State and Government endorsed the statute establishing the African Minerals Development Center through Decision (Assembly / AU / Dec.589 (XXVI).[3] The AMDC is the Specialized Agency of the African Union to coordinate the implementation and domestication of the AMV by the African Union member states. The first phase of the AMDC was guided by a five-year strategic plan from 2013-2019 and was hosted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. The aim of the AMDC is to provide strategic operational support for and coordination for the implementation of the AMV and its Action Plan.[4] In 2018, the African Union’s Assembly of Heads of State and Government endorsed the Republic of Guinea as the host of the AMDC.[5] The transition process for the AMDC to move to Guinea, Conakry is currently ongoing.

Ratification of the AMDC Statute

The next focus is the ratification of the AMDC Statute. A minimum of fifteen ratifications are required for the AMDC Statute to enter into force and fully operationalize the AMDC.  As of July 2022, three Member States (Guinea, Mali and Zambia), had ratified the Statute and eight member states have signed and these include Chad, Comoros, Ghana, Mauritania, Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, Sierra Leone, Sudan, and Togo. While the ratification signing and ratification of the AMDC Statute is the responsibility of member States, for Zimbabwe, stakeholders like Parliament, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Community Based Organisations (CBOs), and the Media can play a very important role towards the signing and ratification of the AMDC Statute. It is through signing and ratification of the AMDC Statute and implementation of its Action Plan that the benefits of the AMV of transforming Africa’s economies through value addition and beneficiation from Africa’s mineral resources, manufacturing, industrialization as well as raising productivity and competitiveness will be achieved. The ratification of the AMDC Statute is very timely to Zimbabwe. The mining sector is regarded as critical to Zimbabwe’s economic recovery, stabilization, and eventual growth. This is reflected in the US 12 Billion Mining Economy by 2023 Strategy, the National Development Strategy 1 ( NDS1[6]) and Vision 2030,[7] and the ongoing review of the Mines and Minerals Act through the Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill which was gazetted on the 3rd of February,2023.[8] Based on these documents and developments, it is therefore evident that it is in Zimbabwe’s best interests for the AMDC Statute to be ratified.

It is against this background that ZELA and other stakeholders are organizing a meeting in March on the ratification of the AMDC Statute in Zimbabwe.

[1] African Union , Africa Mining Vision , 2009

[2] African Union , United Nations Environment Programme , United Nations Economic Commission for African , African Development Bank and the Africa Minerals Development Center ,Africa Minerals Governance Framework, 2018

[3] African Minerals Development Center , Concept Note for the Launch of the AMDC Phase II and the second African Forum on Mining , 2022

[4] Ibid

[5] Ibid

[6] Government of Zimbabwe , National Development Strategy 1( Janury 2021-December, 2025), 2020

[7] Government of Zimbabwe , Vision 2030” Towards a Prosperous and Empowered Middle Income Society by 2030, 2018

[8] Government of Zimbabwe ,Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill, 2022

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