Rwandan miners should operate professionally in order to increase productivity, as well as attract more investors in the sector.
The message was delivered by mining partners in Kigali during the celebration of 2017 International Mining Day.
The event, which brought together various partners, was held under the theme: “Improved mining methods to increase productivity and protect the environment.”
Francis Gatare, the Chief Executive of Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board, encouraged miners to employ workers who have knowledge about the sector, especially graduates from the School of Geology of the University of Rwanda, use high quality equipment, and organise regular trainings for employees.
Gatare said so far, the sector had seen the improvements, such as an increase in prices on the market and exploration for new types of minerals.
“Poor knowledge and equipment used to cause losses but we advised investors to modernise the operations in order to avoid such losses,” Gatare added.
He said research and exploration of new types of minerals would help miners to meet their targets.
Gatare also reminded miners to ensure the protection of the environment in their daily operations.
Another obstacle noted was the lack of qualified lecturers at institutions of higher learning.
To address the problem, Digne Rwabuhungu, a lecturer and Ag.Dean of School of Mining and Geology, said his institution school had been recruiting foreigners to come and teach.
Jean Malic Kalimba, the president of Rwanda Mining Association, said that his association would be calling on all the players to work together as well as improving their methods to ensure that the productivity meets standards.
Kalimba also said that in order to empower workers more training initiatives would be intensified.
“The target has been set and we have been discussing how we can achieve it. We are ready to work together with the government, especially in conducting research in the sector,” he added.
The mining sector raked in about $200 million (Rwf168 billion) in exports in 2016 and is expected to bring in over $300 million (Rwf252 billion) in export receipts in 2017.
Next year, Rwanda will host a global meeting which will bring together businessmen and major companies to discuss mining opportunities in Rwanda.