Mines are development engines for host countries – ICMM – by Martin Creamer (MiningWeekly.com – February 17, 2015)


JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Mines are proven engines of economic development for the host countries, which benefit significantly from the foreign direct investment (FDI) that mines attract as well as the export earnings that they generate, the International Council for Mining & Metals (ICMM) has found in a unique 214-country study, which attests to the need to strengthen the contribution of mining to economic and social wellbeing.

While the focus of host governments was generally on taxes and royalties, the study showed that a strong new focus needed to be placed on the invaluable long-term benefits of FDI and export earnings.

The ICMM report – a world first in terms of scope and scale – also provided evidence of mining making its most profound contribution in the most impoverished regions of the world.

Under the right conditions, the study found that mining could make a contribution that translated to greater citizen wellbeing and ongoing economic momentum even after mines had closed.

“The contribution of mining in national economies is already very, very significant in many, many countries across the world, and what we want to do is to make sure that that contribution is as much as possible,” ICMM president Tony Hodge outlined to Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online on Tuesday (also watch the attached video).

The report noted that country-level work by the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative was bringing greater precision to the reporting of the payment of taxes and royalties and that United Nation’s sustainable development goals, on which a report was due in the second half of next year, could play a strong future role in the prioritising of poverty alleviation.

“The role of mining in alleviating poverty in the long term is going to be profound,” said Hodge, who added that a careful collaborative government, community and mining sector conversation could result in win-win-win formulas.

“There’s no textbook recipe. We’re on new ground here,” he added.

In the meantime, mining companies needed to continue building relationships with workers and the communities around their operations.

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