Development Minerals Programme to be launched Nov. 9

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will hold the Development Minerals Programme Nov. 9 in Addis Ababa.

Africa’s supply of dimension stones, industrial minerals and semi-precious stones may be the key to boosting the continent's economy by creating millions of jobs and spurring intra-Africa trade.

It is estimated that 8 million workers currently hold jobs in this sector, with 40 percent of them being women.

To further study the sector, the African, Caribbean, Pacific Group of States; the European Union; and the UNDP have collaborated to launch the Development Minerals Programme.

This three-year, multi-million-dollar initiative aims to boost the low value minerals and materials (LVMM) sector across 40 countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific.

The official program launch will take place from 9 a.m. to noon at the African Union Small Conference Room and will be overseen by Tolesa Shagi, minister of Mines, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia; Erastus Mwencha, deputy chairperson of the AUCM's Treasure; Thembisile Maphanga, director of Trade and Industry for the AUC; Maximin Emagna, ACP secretariat, Brussels; Ambassador Gary Quince, head of EU Delegation to the AU; and Lebogang Motlana, director of UNDP’s Regional Service Centre for Africa.

The program will address regulatory agencies and local governments, private stakeholders, construction companies, mining and quarrying associations, training centers, universities, civil society organizations and community groups.

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African Union Commission

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