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World Bank: Mining Can Help Haiti Reduce Poverty

Mining is one way to reduce poverty and promote economic growth in Haiti. This is according to the World Bank that states that while mining is a “complex sector,” when managed in a transparent and sustainable fashion, it could be beneficial to the nation.

According to

“The World Bank said this is one of the main conclusions stemming from Haiti’s first mining forum held under the auspices of its Council of Economic and Social Development (CESD) with support from the World Bank, the Ministry of Economy and Finance and the Ministry of Public Works.

‘”This event marks a seminal step towards a shared vision of mining development in Haiti,’ said Deo Ndikumana, the World Bank’s senior country officer for Haiti.

“At the mining forum, international and national experts shared knowledge of the mining sector with representatives from the government, private sector and civil society .

“Alexander Medina, the director of the Mines and Energy Office in the neighboring Dominican Republic, said, ‘Mining has made a very positive contribution to the Dominican Republic, creating jobs, supporting economic growth and providing income to the government.’

“Gerardo Castillo, professor at the Catholic University of Peru, argued that transparent management of mining income is ‘key to overcoming social tensions.’

“For example, he said the Conga project – the largest expected investment in Peru at $5 billion – ‘has been put on hold due to massive local and regional opposition,’

“The World Bank said a new law, strengthened institutional capacity and transparency are ‘critical next steps to unblock the exploration of Haiti’s gold and copper potential, and pave the way for this promising new wealth-generating sector.’

Mining law in Haiti will leave $20B of mineral wealth in foreign hands reports:

“According to mining companies already drilling for gold, copper and silver in the country’s northeastern mountains, Haiti’s untapped minerals and metals could be worth $20 billion.

“Extracting minerals in Haiti has been prohibitive in the past due to many issues, including political instability and resistance to mining companies. But a new report by Haiti Grassroots Watch (HGW), released Thursday, shows that already one-third of the country’s north is under research, exploration, or exploitation license to foreign companies.

“The group added the awarding of permits has happened behind closed doors, with no independent or community input, which has triggered fears the government is opening the country’s reserves for foreigners’ benefit.

“Aware of this, the Haitian Senate resolved in February to halt all activities connected with recently granted gold and copper mining permits to allow for a national debate and for analysis of all contracts.

“A few months later, the World Bank announced it was supporting the government to revise its outdated mining laws.

“The new regulation would set out royalties for the government — between 9 percent and 12 percent — as well as regulate environmental protection.”

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