Azumah Resources to be supported to start full scale mining -Minerals Commission

The government is committed to ensuring that Azumah Resources clear all hurdles to enable it to start full-scale mining in the Upper West Region, Board Chairman of the Minerals Commission and former Member of Parliament for Subin in Ashanti Region, Samuel Boafo, has said.

He said this during a tour of the company’s camp and exploration sites in the Upper West Region by the Minerals Commission Board.

Mr Boafo said,  among the mission of the board was  to support investors, such as Azumah Resources operating in the northern  part of the country to thrive in the mining industry thereby creating jobs for the youth  in the local communities.

“Already there are discussions ongoing on the need to remove VAT on exploration activities to attract more investment in the mining sector,” Mr Boafo disclosed.

He assured that, the commission would facilitate all regulatory requirements to enable the company to come on stream according to the company’s plan.

Briefing board members, the Managing Director, Stephen Stone said Azumah Resources had already invested at least $80 million into its prospecting and exploration activities in the Wa enclave, adding that a further $140 million of investment is required.

 

Mr. Stone informed the board that until recently it had been difficult to secure sufficient funding to complete the project.

 

“Fortunately, in October 2017, a US investment fund – Ibaera Capital – agreed to invest an initial $13.5 million to restart the project,” he said.

 

He said, Azumah and Ibaera were now working together to improve the economics of the project, and advance it to make ready for construction in 2019.

 

Mr Stone appealed to the government help to reduce the costs of construction by way of deferring VAT, import duties, withholding taxes, and royalties for five years during the construction phase.

The discussions also focused on the operations of illegal miners on the company’s concession which is disrupting the company’s current efforts at updating exploration data.
Azumah Resources is an Australian company, that has been prospecting and exploring for gold in the Wa enclave for the past 10 years covering  about 28,000km²,  spanning from Wa West District in the south-western areas of the region to Nandom District in the northern parts.

The company currently employs about 52 Ghanaians as permanent staff and about 100 contract staff. When full-scale mining starts, the company expects to employ 300 Ghanaians, create 1,000 indirect jobs, and a further 1,200 employment opportunities for just the construction project.

By Times Reporter

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