Small and isolated deposits of minerals are scattered all over SADC countries. These often lend themselves to economic exploitation through small-scale mining. With modest demand on capital expenditure and a short lead-time, they also provide employment opportunities for the local population. In certain countries, artisanal miners are exploited by companies who buy their produce cheaply. Artisanal mining in its current form in most SADC countries is poorly regulated and often not taxed.

SADC-Parliamentary Forum adopts Barometer

Extractive companies, big or small, must abide by the laws of the country in which they operate. In most African countries, some companies behave like states within states. Therefore, it is important to guide both national and foreign companies on how they should behave.

Recommended Principles and Guidelines for Extractive Companies


Experience and research have shown that extractive industries have not benefitted local communities much in Africa. Women and girls tend to suffer both directly and indirectly from the negative impacts of such industries. Due to historical reasons, women and girls tend to be more economically disadvantaged thus putting them at a higher risk of exploitation and underpayment. Evidence from research also shows that extractive industries undermine their natural environment, health and other rights.

There are two economic realities on the African continent today. You will find the first one in World Bank, IMF and Africa Development Bank reports – and in articles across the globe about ‘Africa Rising’. This reality depicts Africa as a continent that is forging ahead – onwards and upwards. And some of the world’s best performing economies are indeed in Africa, such as Angola and Mozambique, which are growing at an extractive-powered rate of knots.

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