WINDHOEK, Nov. 29 — Namibia’s Chamber of Mines President Zebra Kasete said the country’s mining industry continues to grow despite various challenges experienced this year.
Speaking in a mining industry briefings to Minister of Mines and Energy Tom Alweendo on Wednesday, Kasete said that this year commodity markets continued to be volatile, with uranium still being very depressed, a situation that forced Langer Heinrich uranium mine to lay off about 600 workers.
“We are, however, consoled by the robust fundamentals of the uranium markets in the medium to long term. Indications are that the markets may recovery by 2022, at which point the two mines on care and maintenance will come back into production and at least five uranium projects will advance to mine development,” he said.
“The challenges are being addressed and the mines may come back into operations again when market conditions improve,” he added.
Kasete told the minister that investments into new mines are currently taking place and the ministry will soon officiate some of the operations.
“New operations include the reopening of the Namibia Lead and Zinc mine outside Swakopmund, the Whale Rock Cement factory with a mining license over its quarry and the revival of the Uis tin mine which was closed down in the early 1990s,” he added.
Meanwhile, Kasete said the Chamber of Mines is however concerned with new tax proposals in the Income Tax Amendment Bill of 2018.
“Some of these proposals are so devastating to the industry and thus counterproductive to the objective of growing the economy,” he said.
The minister said in a statement that despite the challenges the industry is faced with, mining activities in the country continue to contribute significantly to the economy and national development agendas.