July 27, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Minister of Minerals Ahmed Sadiq al-Karouri said his country expects to produce 100 tonnes of gold in 2016, pointing it would become Africa’s second largest and among the world’s top ten producers by the end of the year.
- A local brings his gold for examination at a laboratory in the gold market in Khartoum (Photo: Reuters)
Al-Karouri, who spoke to reporters following his meeting with Sudan’s ambassador to New Delhi Siraj al-Din Hamid, expected that Indian companies would play a major role in metal fabrication and in particular iron in Sudan.
He added that India would also invest in the manufacturing of gold and precious stones, saying that India is among the major buyers of gold globally.
The Sudanese minister pledged to facilitate all the procedures for the Indian investors.
Last month, al-Karouri said that gold production in the first quarter of the current fiscal year reached 22.3 tonnes which generated some $903.13 million.
In April, the Ministry of Minerals said that the country’s production of gold has risen by 3 percent compared to 2015, according to the first quarter of 2016 report.
Near 70% of the country’s gold production in 2015 was produced in the River Nile State. The traditional mining represents 90% of gold production in Sudan.
Sudan currently ranks third in gold production behind South Africa and Ghana but aims to land in the first place by 2018.
Gold has become one of Sudan’s largest exports which partially compensated for the loss in oil revenues, which accounted for more than 50% of income until 2011 when South Sudan seceded, thus taking with it most of the country’s oil reserves.
Sudan approved a law to regulate traditional mining by granting licenses and specifying areas to work in to protect them from hazardous conditions and smuggling.
It is believed that traditional mining employs more than a million Sudanese but it is still difficult to obtain credible data.
On the other hand, there are currently 132 companies operating in the regular mining sector in Sudan including 15 foreign companies.