Investors ask govt to lift ban on iron ore
Posted Sunday, March 16 2014 at 02:00
The Prime Minister says the ban was meant to prevent the depletion of the iron ore.
Investors in iron ore exploration and mining have appealed to the government to lift the ban on the export of the mineral.
Mr Ashok Mustapare, a director at Uganda International Mining Company, made the appeal while meeting Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi at his office in Kampala on Friday, according to a statement issued by his office.
President Museveni announced the ban in October 2012 to allow sustainable operations by investors and also recoup their investment.
The statement says investors, who have so far invested about $7.5 million (about Shs18.5 billion), were granted an exploration licence and a 20-year mining lease by government for about 262 acres of land in Rugando, Kanungu District.
Mr Mbabazi says the area has an estimated 55 million tonnes of iron ore deposits, and the mining lease allows the investors to carry out mining on the scale of not less than 700, 000 tonnes annually against the local market demand of 84,000 tonnes a year.
Mr Mbabazi said the government’s ban on iron ore exports aimed at supporting development of the local steel industry and also promoting the value-addition policy for Ugandan exports.