mining

Britain's role in extracting continent's resources

The pattern discerned through much of this chapter, of uneven responses, is also true of responses to HIV and AIDS, which has come to be seen as a core test of corporate social responsibility in the region. While this may seem to be a labour relations issue, since companies are usually responding to employees who are affected by the virus, it is usually seen as a CSR issue because some companies do offer support programmes for people beyond the workplace. Responses range from total indifference to significant concern expressed in elaborate policies and programmes.

Despite the qualifications expressed in the previous paragraph, the relationship between China and the countries researched here has repeatedly been presented as a development partnership, not a commercial arrangement.

Mining has been practiced in West Africa since the earliest times and small-scale mining of gold and iron has been the basis of wealth and/or power of many empires and kingdoms in the region throughout history.

Rio+20 will debate sustainable economic path

Nicole Mawazo lives in Ngoyo and has built up a successful business by combining farming with operating a small restaurant. Forced to look after herself and her brothers after Rwandan or Ugandan soldiers killed her parents, Nicole began producing ‘Kindingi’, a home-made, highly alcoholic, corn-banana brew, which she sold to artisanal miners. Eventually, she saved up enough to start farming and running a restaurant. “This has provided well for us,” she explained proudly, adding that her husband contributes almost nothing to the family.

Seven years ago, Congolese soldiers attacked Kilwa – looting, murdering and raping their way through the remote town in central Katanga. At the end of the raid, over 70 people had been killed and many more raped and injured by the troops. It was a barbaric attack – one of many in the eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in the last decade. But what made the Kilwa incident different was the allegation that Anvil Mining – an Australian-Canadian company operating a large silver and copper mine nearby – had provided the soldiers with logistical support.

 

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.

Will US law help end conflict minerals in DRC?

Sometimes despair is the only response. Despair and fury - that mining executives can be so blinded by profits and greed that they cannot see the horror of their ways. Usually, their real views about the workers their companies exploit are kept well hidden by a wealth of PR gurus and communications experts. But just occassionally they speak candidly and then the truth comes out - the truth that they do not care an iota for the men and women who toil in often hazardous conditions to keep them mega-rich.

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