Artisanal and small-scale mining visioning workshop

On 29 April, 2015, representatives from donors, industry, artisanal and small-scale mining, government and civil society gathered for the start of a two-day 'visioning workshop' to explore routes to a more inclusive and responsible gold mining sector. Follow the updates as it happened:

  1. Before the workshop, here's some background reading on how IIED is working to create a space for dialogue between different representatives of the mining sector
  2. BLOG: Not enough has been heard from local #mining voices in last 10 years, says @abbibuxton. This needs to change -> 
  3. Steve Bass' blog suggests dialogue could make a big difference in tackling problems/potentials faced by #ASM
    Steve Bass' blog suggests dialogue could make a big difference in tackling problems/potentials faced by #ASM
  4. ICYMI: Ahead of an IIED visioning workshop on artisanal & small-scale #mining, here's 5 essential #ASM resources --> 
  5. Day one:
  6. In London, IIED is today hosting a visioning workshop on artisanal & small-scale #mining #ASM @abbibuxton
  7. London bound to attend @IIED multi-stakeholder dialogue on artisanal & small-scale mining. Program looks great  #A&SM
  8. We have brought together a fantastic group of people to drive forward change in the ASM sector #dialogue #mining @IIED
  9. The morning of the first day had seen stakeholders come together and agree that the long-term goal was to have ASM as a functional and sustainable business sector. The steps along the way, however, were still up for debate
  10. In ASM #dialogue,we've identified challenges-now pushing ahead w/ opportunities incl ASM's huge economic potential, often overlooked #mining
  11. Bringing govts in2 ASM #dialogue is 1 of our biggest challenges.Peer-2-peer learning is vital to address gaps in knowledge&capacity #mining
  12. At the close of day one, stakeholders felt that a local-dialogue series on ASM must tackle the two elephants in the room: the issue of government capacity and injecting fresh thought and debate on how to formalise the sector, both of which hinged on market and rights-based approaches
  13. BLOG: Participants of an artisanal & small-scale #mining (#ASM) visioning workshop share a long-term vision --> 
  14. Day two:
  15. Today at @IIED workshop on ASM we will ask how #dialogue can contribute to the vision "ASM needs to operate as a functional business sector"
  16. #ASM #dialogue: How do we involve non-usual suspects in #artisanal #mining? We can't just preach to the choir! @IIED @abbibuxton
  17. It was agreed that any conversation on formalisation must begin with rights, and that a human rights approach was seen as important to help orient a more progressive vision for the future
  18. #ASM #dialogue: Formalisation of artisanal mining needs to be seen as a process, where recognition is a first step @IIED @abbibuxton
  19. "In the absence of an integral conception of rights, it's very difficult to formalise" #mining #dialogue #ASM
  20. #dialogue cannot be an Anglo-English exercise - it must be multilingual and multicultural #mining #dialogue #ASM
  21. The idea of using different kinds of information to target and mobilise different stakeholders was met with enthusiasm. So too was changing how we frame debates in the sector
  22. "We need to make the debate about poverty alleviation rather than formal and informal" #mining #ASM
  23. Where #ASM works in a criminalised space vested interests and corruption runs deep and right to the top #mining
  24. Positive and innovative examples were also put on display, with approaches taken by the Ethiopian government peaking top interest
  25. #Ethiopia is one of the best cases in Africa of managing a regulatory framework for #ASM #mining
  26. Market-drivers were seen as powerful forces that set formalisation efforts down the right path, but it was thought that more still needed to be done to ensure initiatives penetrate to the ground level
  27. Initiatives like @EITIorg need to start including artisanal & small scale #mining to reduce corruption and drive revenue from the sector
  28. Conversations on government capacity started with the idea of integrating ASM into exiting mandates and revisting old policies to review their efficacy
  29. Ghanaian law recognised #ASM from 1989 yet 70% still operate 'illegally' - nothing wrong with the people, something wrong with law #mining
  30. And while it was widely viewed that government must play a leading role, it is not just the responsiblity of governments to take up the mantle of leadership. Each stakeholder group has a role to play
  31. We need to move the "big lazy sleepy giant" that is government to improve #ASM #mining #dialogue
  32. #dialogue needs to deliver on #leadership, which may be government, civil soc or others, but also needs to be #inclusive #mining @IIED
  33. The role of a global set of actors, too, was up for debate
  34. We need to situate national issues in global space to drive the importance for governments #dialogue @IIED "local to global"
  35. While building the business case for ASM was seen as a top priority among dialogue attendees
  36. There is a lot of money to be made if you consider the potential of millions of people putting their tiny bits of gold together #ASM
  37. One former large-scale miner articulated the potential of ASM in the community of Mgusu, Tanzania:
  38. “After studying the production rates of ASM in Mgusu, the number of people involved, their recovery rates and so on, we saw that on average, the miners produced ~13 oz.of gold per community member, per year. Even if you assume there are only 100,000 people, then the yearly production of gold from ASM would sit at ~1.3million oz./yr. Now compare this with the national production rates for Tanzania, which sit at ~1 million oz., with investment from the mining sectorsitting in the billions."
  39. "The potential is there and it is massive. And it could be realised with, relatively speaking, very little effort and investment. The recovery data of ASM in this area sat at 10-30 per cent using traditional recovery methods. With the introduction of proper metallurgical methods, one could double the efficiency of the miners to a 50-60 per cent recovery rate.”
  40. A business case is needed to demonstrate value of ASM. Do studies exist on economic value of ASM or comparisons to LSM? @IIED @abbibuxton
  41. Knowledge and information was seen as a two-way street. Any initiative must enter communities to take stock of the different kinds of information miners want and need
  42. #asm #dialogue: we need to make sure the knowledge & understanding of #artisanal #miners is levelled with others' at the table @IIED
  43. Others who could not attend the dialogue passed on their thoughts of change for the sector. Anthony Mavunde, from the Federation of Miners Association of Tanzania (FEMATA), highlighted the importance of improving geological, environmental and regulatory information and its accessibility for ASM miners, and that if we really want to address the deep-rooted vulnerabilities of the sector, we need to start on the ground, building stronger artisanal mining communities
  44. The time is right for #dialogue, and it's time to think big #ASM #mining @IIED
  45. Fantastic 2 days visioning a #dialogue for progress in #ASM. Keep an eye out for next steps @IIED. Thanks all for great inputs!
  46. Over the next few weeks, IIED will be compiling and analysing the experiences, perspectives and knowledge captured from the two-day workshop. From here, we move to in-country multi-stakeholder dialogues that will tackle these issues at their root: on the ground.