Over 1000 Guyanese to be employed as large scale mining company signs contract

Published on Wednesday, 09 November 2011 22:40
Written by Adele Rampersaud

The Government of Guyana has inked an agreement with Sandsprings resources and ETK Incorporated, a Canadian mining company to recommence large scale mining here.The operation of the mining company is expected to contribute in excess of $50M annually to Guyana’s gross domestic product and will create employment for some 1000 Guyanese.

Signing the agreement on behalf of the government of Guyana was Prime Minister Samuel Hinds who stated that the agreement was in the pipeline for sometime as the company has been working in Guyana for the past 12 years. He added that with the operation of Sandspring and ETK, it will resuscitate large scale mining in Guyana. Meanwhile, Chairman of the boards of Sandspring resources and ETK Incorporated, John Adams believes the agreement is a fair one for both sides and can serve as a model for future mineral agreements.

He said his company welcomes the change in the royalty payments from 5 percent to 8 percent which is due to the high price for gold. Chairman of Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, Joseph Singh who also spoke at the event emphasised the importance of partnership between the government of Guyana and all stakeholders.Singh also stressed on the contribution of gold and bauxite to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The agreement was signed in the presence of President Bharrat Jagdeo and Presidential Advisor Donald Ramotar and other stakeholders. Toropuru mine will cost a total of $US700M to set up with a mine life of 15 years. Its annual production is targeted as 250 to 300 and 20 million pounds of copper.
Original Post
An interesting paper to read (even though it was written several years ago), but worth keeping current.


Excerpt: Mining and Amerindians in Guyana

"Executive Summary
The rapid expansion of mining is a central element in the Government of Guyana’s
national development strategy, strongly encouraged by international development agencies
such as IMF and World Bank. Plans include the privatization and expansion of bauxite
mining and the development of small, medium and large-scale diamond and gold mines.
Serious impacts are already being felt by the Amerindians as a consequence. This report
results from a participatory study carried out to assess these impacts and develop proposals
for more effective Amerindian engagement with the mining sector.
This study has been carried out by the Amerindian Peoples Association, with the
assistance of the Forest Peoples Programme, as part of a project titled β€˜Exploring Indigenous
Perspectives on Consultation and Engagement Within the Mining Sector in Latin America
and the Caribbean’ being coordinated by The North-South Institute of Canada. The
consultation process comprised two national workshops of a National Indigenous Advisory
Committee, four regional consultations in Amerindian communities, a field visit to mine sites
in the Matthew’s Ridge region, interviews with key stakeholder groups and Government
officials, and a literature review.
Amerindians in Guyana number around 60,000 and make up some 7 per cent of the
population. However, because 90 per cent of Guyanese live along the narrow coastal strip,
Amerindians make up the majority population in the interior. Only about half of these
Amerindians live in communities that are officially recognized as Amerindian. As many as
12,000 persons, many of them Amerindians, are directly engaged in mining in the interior.
Some 14,500 small-scale mining permits and 1,800 licences for dredges have been issued by
the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC). Exploration and prospecting permits
for possible large-scale mines now cover as much as 25 per cent of the surface area of the
country. . Brazilian miners and syndicates are now centrally involved in small, medium and
large-scale mining ventures. There is much illegal traffic across the frontier...."

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