Dar es Salaam. Tanzania Women Miners Association (Tawoma) has secured a licence from the Tanzania Mining Commission to carry out value-addition to minerals especially gemstones and other precious metals such as gold and silver, a move that would enable women to earn more income.
Prior to the authorisation, the association, which is the heart of networking for all women miners in the country, had been selling raw minerals abroad, something that denied them sufficient income.
Following the issuance of the licence, Tawoma is currently manufacturing products such as engagement, wedding rings and precious gemstones jewelries and sell them to the domestic and foreign markets.
“I applaud the mining commission for its continued support to us. We now practice mineral value addition such as lapidary and jewellery designing.
The prices of the products vary depending on the designing and a type of the stone used for decoration,” said Tawoma’s minerals value addition department secretary Mecktilder Mchomvu during a press conference over the weekend.
She added that the price of some products ranges between Sh580,000 to Sh30 million per product.
Meanwhile, Tawoma secretary-general Salma Kundy revealed that the Association was contemplating to prepare a database in order to enable them to have accurate figures indicating actual minerals production and sales contributed by its members.
“Having the database will also enable us to know women miners’ contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” Ms Kundy postulated.
Moreover, Tawoma’s chairperson Eunice Negele hailed President John Magufuli, citing that reforms in Tanzania’s mining sector are paying off.
Highlighting some of the current reforms in the sector, Ms Negele pointed out that the construction of a 24-kilometre wall at Mirerani and establishment of more than 20 minerals trading centres across the country have helped the government to control illegal smuggling of the precious gems.
“In the next five years, the mining sector will contribute sufficient revenues to the GDP following reforms made by the government” added Ms Negele.
The country’s mining sector is expected to contribute 10 per cent to the GDP by 2025.
Currently, the mining sector’s contribution to the GDP is estimated at 4.8 percent.