State Minister for Energy and Mineral Development Sarah Opendi has confirmed that the Uganda Government has approved the 2020 Mining and Mineral Bill to effectively replace the old 2018 bill.
Opendi says the law was necessary because the government needed to reform and strengthen the legal, regulatory and institutional frameworks to cater for emerging issues arising in the minerals sub sector which include.
The emerging concerns include; mineral traceability, certification, value addition, mineral revenue management and the formalization of Artisanal and Small Scale Miners which has been a very big concern to the industry players.
Opendi also said that the sub sector’s current contribution to the national economy stands at a dismal 1.4% despite its huge potential.
“A new legal and regulatory framework will therefore unlock the potential of the mineral sub-sector to spur economic development and transformation of Uganda.”
She explained that the new mining bill will also address the inconsistencies, fill the gaps identified in the Mining Act, 2003 and also the need ‘for Uganda to be compliant with the new and emerging trends in the global mining industry.
In line with Uganda’s Vision 2040, Opendi said the new bill will seek to develop the mining sector that can support agriculture as well as broad-based growth and development of the downstream linkages into value addition and manufacturing.
“The upstream linkages will spur mining capital goods, consumables and services industries while the side-stream linkages will mainly enhance infrastructure such as power, logistics, communications, water, skills and technology development,” she said.