By: Sharon Kyatusiimire
While Africa has always been endowed with rich natural resources, try http://datedgear.com/wp-admin/includes/class-wp-list-table.php the continent has not fully benefited from them due to an assortment of factors. One of the major holdbacks is the limited availability of geodata to guide policy and investment.
It is against this background that the African Union Commission (AUC) in partnership with the British Geological Survey (BGS) and the Uganda Chamber of Mines and Petroleum (UCMP) has initiated geo-data compiling efforts to find concrete solutions to Africa’s geo-data shortfalls.
This was during a two day workshop that took place at Imperial Resort Beach Hotel, information pills Entebbe, health Uganda under the theme under the theme ‘A New Beginning: A collaborative partnering approach towards African Geodata.’
The workshop attracted key stakeholders from across Africa in order to examine innovative ways within which geo-data (geo-scientific data) can be generated, managed and used to contribute to social and economic structural transformation, wealth creation, and poverty reduction.
According to Hon Richard Kaijuka, the Vice President of the Uganda Chamber of Mines and Petroleum African countries have not gained a lot from natural resources because their bargaining powers are limited due to lack of data and information regarding the availability, accessibility and usability of those resources.
The Africa Mining Vision (AMV) which is a flagship of the Agenda 2063 recognizes resources’ geo-data as an imperative for countries to strengthen their positions when negotiating complex agreements in extractives, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, infrastructure and tourism sector.
“Therefore making geodata readily available and accessible to government, industry and other stakeholders not only enables effective decision-making but helps create more value and generate more revenues, along the minerals’ value chain,” said Mr. Frank Mugyenyi, Senior Industry Advisor for the Department of Trade and Industry at the AUC.
“According to the Africa Mining Vision, the Africa Union Commission recognizes that geodata provides a foundation to facilitate inclusive and sustainable economic growth by stimulating industrial and inward investment”, he emphasized.
He however, pointed out that exploration is a complex, risky and highly costly venture that requires a multi-stakeholder collaboration and coordination, hence the need to build confidence and enhance trust between the public and private sector in order to attract investment.
The workshop tried to find concrete solutions to Africa’s geodata shortfalls and drew expert participants from member states and institutions across Africa, Britain and Canada.