Govt grants new $300m limestone mining license

Energy Minister Ruth Nankabirwa

What you need to know:

  • Sunbird Resources will partner with Chinese investors to explore and mine minerals in Uganda

Government has granted Sunbird Resources, a local company, a 21-year mining license in Karamoja sub-region.  

Sunbird Resources will partner with Chinese investors to explore and mine minerals in Uganda. 

Speaking during the signing of licence and handover, Energy Minister Ruth Nankabirwa, said government had granted a 21-year large-scale mining license to Sunbird Resources covering an area of 11 square kilometers in Rupa Sub-county, Moroto District to mine 8,000 tonnes of limestone per day. 

“Limestone is a crucial raw material for making of clinker that is finally used in the manufacture of cement. This will culminate into royalty payments to the consolidated fund of over Shs160m per day of operation,” she said. 

Sunbird Resources will partner with West International Holdings, a subsidiary of West China Cement, to set up a 6,000 tonnes per day clinker line and one million tonnes per year cement factory at Nadunget Sub-county in Moroto District.

President Museveni broke the ground for construction of the plant last year. 

Mr Ambrose Byona, the Sunbird Resources managing director, said limestone mining is expected to start operating in July.  

The new license will be key in reducing importation of clicker by at least 2.4m tonnes annually valued at more than $700m.  

Mr Byona said that already, exploration has been done spanning more than six years resulting in the discovery of about 67 million tonnes of clinkerable limestone. 

Mr Peter Lokeris, the Mineral Development state minister, said the $300m venture will be key in turning around the fortune of the Karamoja sub-region.