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A new mining era for small and big firms.

Although largely under-explored, Cameroon's extractive extractive /ex·trac·tive/ (-tiv) any substance present in an organized tissue, or in a mixture in a small quantity, and requiring extraction by a special method.

 resources are becoming increasingly attractive to the world's large mining companies. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 a report on Cameroon's mining sector presented by the prime minister's office The Prime Minister's Office is a small department which provides advice to a Prime Minister in some countries:
  • Office of the Prime Minister (Canada)
  • British Prime Minister's Office
See also
  • Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
, while the country's mineral wealth has yet to be firmly established with geological surveys, it can be confidently asserted that "Cameroon's mineral wealth is extremely rich ... one finds there at least a little of everything".

Over the last few years, the Years, The

the seven decades of Eleanor Pargiter’s life. [Br. Lit.: Benét, 1109]

See : Time
 Cameroon administration has launched a charm offensive charm offensive

a concentrated attempt to gain favour by being helpful and obliging
 to attract investments by the large international mining companies. They have identified that developing the mining sector can boost the country's economic growth. Only the oil sector had previously recognised the potential of Cameroon's extractive industries.

Some 50 varieties of minerals have been identified as present in Cameroon in sufficient quantities for viable commercial exploitation. Diamonds are found mainly in the south-east area, around the region of the borders with Congo and the Central African Republic Central African Republic, republic (2005 est. pop. 3,800,000), 240,534 sq mi (622,983 sq km), central Africa. The landlocked nation is bordered by Chad (N), Sudan (E), Congo (Kinshasa) and Congo (Brazzaville) (S), and Cameroon (W). . Gold is also present in significant quantities in this region as well as on the Adamoua plateau. Yet the Ministry of Mining has identified fewer than 140 gold targets and 19 diamond targets.

Cameroon's mineral exploitation is mainly being undertaken by small-scale enterprises that have been encouraged by 2001 legislation that boosted artesian Ar`te´sian

a. 1. Of or pertaining to Artois (anciently called Artesium), in France.
Artesian wells
wells made by boring into the earth till the instrument reaches water, which, from internal pressure, flows spontaneously like a
 mining. Modern, large-scale mining will take time to get established, but with the collaboration of the French Bureau of Geology and Mining Research, exploration activities have been stepped up to identify large deposits of minerals suitable for commercial exploitation.


Last July, the government launched an organisation to support and promote small-scale mining. Dubbed dub 1  
tr.v. dubbed, dub·bing, dubs
1. To tap lightly on the shoulder by way of conferring knighthood.

2. To honor with a new title or description.

 CAPEM, its mandate is to organise and develop the small-scale mining sector in Cameroon, and help integrate it into the formal economy. It also aims to improve the working conditions of small-scale miners. The CAPEM programme will be implemented at 28 sites, in six of Cameroon's 10 provinces where small-scale mining has been established.

The government will inject CFA (Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986) Signed into law in 1986, the CFA was a significant step forward in criminalizing unauthorized access to computer systems and networks. The Act applies to "federal interest computers" that include any system used by the U.S. 4.5bn ($11.13m) in funding to develop this programme. Since CAPEM was inaugurated, the small-scale mining sector has already generated 5,000 new jobs and government expects that number to reach 15,000 jobs by 2010. CAPAM CAPAM Commonwealth Association for Public Administration and Management (UK)  should, through an efficient reorganisation of the artesian mining sector, put an end to the dangerous, clandestine CLANDESTINE. That which is done in secret and contrary to law.
     2.Generally a clandestine act in case of the limitation of actions will prevent the act from running.
 exploitations of gold and other mineral deposits.

International large-scale mining companies are also showing increased interest in mineral exploitation, especially for bauxite bauxite (bôk`sīt, bŏk`–), mixture of hydrated aluminum oxides usually containing oxides of iron and silicon in varying quantities.  used to smelt aluminium. Two main deposits have been identified at Minim Martap and Adamoua in the west of the country, where reserves are estimated at around 2bn tons. Exploitation of these bauxite deposits, some of the richest in the world, is currently constrained by their distance from a seaport as well as the absence of a rail link. The large investments required in transport infrastructure are being undertaken by the US company Hydromin.

Hydromin has been operating in Cameroon for the last three years, and in January 2006 signed a build, operate, transfer (BOT) partnership agreement with the government to exploit the bauxite deposits. Peter L Briger, a former advisor to US Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, chairs the company.

According to Hydromin's director general, Jean Pierre Ndongo Zanga, between CFA2.5bn ($6.18m) and CFA3bn ($7.4m) will be invested in the construction of port infrastructure and the processing of minerals through a consortium made up of Hydromin working with the French group Bollore, the Japanese energy group Marubeni, Hindalco industries Hindalco Industries is one of India's largest material-related company and is a subsidiary of the Aditya Birla Group. It is run by one of the world's youngest billionaires, Mr. K.M. Birla. Financial information
The company has annual sales of $ 2.
 and aluminium producers Dubal. The latter has committed to purchasing more than 70% of future bauxite production.

Meanwhile, 60 exploration permits have been awarded around the Jah reserve, and the Lomie cobalt-nickel minefield should begin production at the end of 2008. In 2003, Geovic Cameroun SA, a subsidiary of the American firm Geocam, obtained an exploitation permit for a 1,630sq km 21-year concession to exploit this mine, one of the most important on the continent. The mine's infrastructure is currently under construction.

Unlike many other deposits of this type, this mine contains more cobalt than nickel, which is a more profitable proposition. The Lomie cobaltnickel minefield has the capacity to produce 4,000t of cobalt and 2,000t of nickel a year.


Camsa mining, a South African-Danish consortium has announced its intention to invest CFA34bn ($84.12m) in Cameroon's mining sector, but has not revealed what reserves it will exploit. Nu Energy Corporation Cameroun, a 92% subsidiary of Canadian company Mega Uranium Ltd, has spearheaded that company's first African operations and began exploring for uranium in 2007 at the Kitongo and Teubang sites in the north of the country and Lolodorf in the central region.

The Australian company Camlron has an exploration permit for the Mbalam iron field, located at the border region with Gabon and Congo. Mbalam is believed to contain 567m tons of ore with a 60% iron content and exploitation should start in 2010, together with the construction of a 498km railway line and a deep-water port at Kribi. The proposed total cost of this development is around CFA1,050bn ($2.6bn). The mining agreement, currently being negotiated with the government, should be signed later this year.

Finally, the limestone mines that feed the Lafarge cement plants in Cameroon are rapidly being depleted de·plete  
tr.v. de·plet·ed, de·plet·ing, de·pletes
To decrease the fullness of; use up or empty out.

[Latin d
, but exploration has revealed promising new deposits on the country's littoral littoral /lit·to·ral/ (lit´ah-r'l) pertaining to the shore of a large body of water.


pertaining to the shore.
 to replace these ageing reserves.

As Paul Ntep Gwet, a director of CAPAM, explained to the local press: "In 2003, the country had issued just two permits for industrial mining operations and the activities of the small-scale mining sector were not even monitored. Today, more than 60 mining permits have been issued and there is great activity within the mining sector, reflecting the strong global demand for mineral resources Noun 1. mineral resources - natural resources in the form of minerals
natural resource, natural resources - resources (actual and potential) supplied by nature

"Since the early years of Cameroon's independence, there has been constant speculation regarding the various minerals that the country has, but only oil has been exploited and that rather modestly. The situation is markedly different today."
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Comment:A new mining era for small and big firms.(CAMEROON COUNTRY REPORT)
Publication:African Business
Geographic Code:6CAME
Date:May 1, 2008
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