Tough stance on smugglers will boost Rwanda’s mining sector

More than 90 tonnes of minerals have been impounded by the Revenue Protection Department from March to September this year- a period of five months.According to the Ministry charged with mining, the origin of 70,000 tones has been identified to be the Democratic Republic of the Congo and, the consignment will soon be handed over to the government of the Central African country.

More than 90 tonnes of minerals have been impounded by the Revenue Protection Department from March to September this year- a period of five months.

According to the Ministry charged with mining, the origin of 70,000 tones has been identified to be the Democratic Republic of the Congo and, the consignment will soon be handed over to the government of the Central African country.

In 2010, the country passed mining decrees to govern and regulate the sector. The decrees include a requirement for all dealers to have their minerals certified and tagged by competent authorities.

The move has helped curb the importation and smuggling of conflict minerals which find their way into the country as it shares borders with the DRC, where minerals have helped finance conflict.

Since the enforcement of the decree, Rwanda's mining industry has registered impressive growth. In the first quarter of 2011, revenues tripled to US$35.5m compared to the same period last year.

By being on track in the implementation of the mineral traceability and tagging project as well as taking a tough stance on preventing smuggling, the country is adhering to international regulations governing mineral trade.

This will not only boost the country mineral sector, but will also make international dealers as well as investors more comfortable to do business in Rwanda.

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