CAPE TOWN – Investing in mining production in Niger might sound a little like playing in the traffic with razor blades but delegates at the Investing in African Mining Indaba heard on Tuesday, that it is a lot better bet than it sounds on a number of levels.
The country’s Mines and Energy Minister Moussa Hassane Baraze was at pains to assure would-be investors who had gathered for a country case study that Niger not only had huge untapped potential but a legal and political environment that was very supportive of foreign investment in the sector.
In addition to being politically stable, he said, Niger had a lot of in-country experience in uranium mining. The case for investing received strong support from a number of representatives of private industry who have been active in the country for many years.
The delegates were told that the time to invest in uranium production in Niger was now. Just as uranium demand, driven by nuclear energy growth, is forecast to grow dramatically, supply is expected to decline.
China is exponentially building reactors; India is following that curve, if a little behind. All the while, existing mines are coming to the end of their lives and the price crash has held back further investment.
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