Dar es Salaam. A local mining company is stuck with $8 million (about Sh18 billion) concentrates of gold and copper as the government has not yet allowed miners to export the unrefined minerals. Katavi Mining Company Limited (KMCL), a subsidiary of Oman’s Al Hooqani International Group, says the concentrates are waiting for government approvals to export the stock.
“We have not done business yet as we wait for the permit to export,” said company’s business and marketing manager Osama Ahmed. According to him, the company has so far invested $120 million since it was established in 2010“We have a good relationship with the government since we started operations and hope to obtain the export permit so that we can do business,” he said.
The revelations come as the government already cleared Bar-rick Gold to export 277 containers of gold and copper concentrates which had been held in Dar es Salaam since 2017 following a tax wrangle.
In January this year, Bar-rick Gold signed a deal with the government to end the long-running dispute. However, speaking about the progress to allow other mining firms in the country to export the mineral concentrates, the Minister for Minerals, Mr Doto Biteko, said the government has already put a plan in place and miners should rest assured that exportation permits will be issued soon.
He said, he already issued directives to the regional mineral officers to conduct census in all industrial mines across the country to determine the type and quantities of minerals stockpiled pending the export permits. “There after a regulatory procedure will follow to see if the stocks have met the criteria, and then permits for exportation will be issued as early as possible,” he said.
Katavi Mining extraction facilities are located at Singililwa, about 33 kilometres from the Mpanda town in Katavi Region. Mr Osama said, part of the company objectives when they get the approval to export, and is to use a portion of the funds for community projects.
“The company has been supporting the community that resides in the neighbourhood since we started operations there. We have participated in sports, education and other social projects,” he said.
The firm has also regularly conducted malaria and typhoid control awareness programmes in parts of the region