AMV yet to be ratified, 14 years since AU’s adoption 


Industry stakeholders have expressed concern over the country’s lack of resolve to ratify the African Mining Vision (AMV) – a continental commitment to using mineral resources as a catalyst for socio-economic development – 14 years after its adoption by the African Union (AU).

The AMV’s main goal is to create transparent, equitable and optimal exploitation of mineral resources to underpin broad-based sustainable growth and socio-economic development.

Adopted by Heads of State in 2009 at the AU summit following the October 2008 meeting of African Ministers responsible for Mineral Resources Development, it is considered a home-grown response to tackling ‘the paradox of great mineral wealth existing side by side with pervasive poverty’.

“The AMV is first and foremost a developmental mining approach that insists the real road to growth is through building economic and social linkages which benefit Africa itself,” according to AU communications.

However, approval and subsequent operationalisation of the AMV by Ghana remains a fantasy.

It is against this background that the Programme Officer on Gender and Economic Policy of the Third World Network (TWN) – Africa, Pauline Vande-Pallen, noted that there is a need to ratify the AMV in order to ensure the country and its people benefit more from mineral resources.

“We have to ensure the mineral resources contribute to our development in a much more structured way than exists currently,” she said.

What is keenly expected, she added, is to see some significant beneficiation within the mineral exploitation process – from extraction to processing.

More importantly, she noted that AMV recognises artisanal and small-scale mining as a key element.

For instance, she said in Ghana – despite the negative connotations around the work of artisanal and small-scale miners – if efforts are made to ensure that it is carried out in a much more structured way, it would be more beneficial to the country.

To this end, she said, the AMV calls for “policies and practices to be put in place to support artisanal and small-scale mining, and contextually how women are supported to work within that space”.

She however reckons that despite women forming a significant proportion of those involved in artisanal and small-scale mining, the AMV is not explicit on how women should be supported.

This, she said, is a gap that needs to be addressed. “The Women and Mining Association has been working with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to put together a gender and           extractives document, and this is something we could look to ensure that women within the extractive sector are supported.”

The Programme Officer for TWN-Africa, further demanded details on the state of the country’s mining vision and the support required to realise it.

She said made these comments on the side-lines of a roundtable discussion that brought together actors in the extractive industry to discuss gender-gaps in policies and legislation regulating the sector.

The engagement also focused on conditions of female artisanal small-scale miners to inform advocacy interventions which promote gender inclusivity in the extractive sector.

It was organised by the Network for Women’s Rights in Ghana (NETRIGHT) with support from TWN-Africa. It forms part of the ‘Power of Voce’ (PVP) project, which is being implemented by the two     organisations.

The project seeks to strengthen civil society to create/demand more inclusive and sustainable trade and value chains that respect human rights, protect the environment and promote women’s economic           empowerment.

The Programme Manager of NETRIGHT, Patricia Blankson Akakpo, also speaking at the event noted that the extractive sector must invest in genuine solutions which put social, economic and political     empowerment for women in the extractives at their centre.

This, she said, will help the sector to overcome gender-barriers and issues women continue to face.

Leave a Reply