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Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines Factsheet

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Written and produced for the Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines

Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines

• • SIERRA LEONE CHAMBER OF MINES S C H A M IER RA LEON E B E R O F M IN E S UNDERSTANDING THE SIERRA LEONE CHAMBER OF MINES Message from the President of the Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines The mining industry has a long history in Sierra Leone. It has much to be proud of. It has also had to acknowledge and initiate the need for substantial change. Current debates from the media, mining communities, government, investors and other stakeholders indicate plainly that their expectations of the mining sector and its contribution to national development have increased significantly. We in the mining sector are amongst those at the forefront of that debate. We have accepted that it is no longer sufficient to measure our contribution to the country solely in monetary terms. Instead we have begun to ask ourselves how we can ensure that our activities are better aligned with our nation’s development goals and ambitions. The establishment of a new and invigorated Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines has been an important step in that process. We are making considerable strides towards achieving that alignment, putting in place progressive policies and procedures that will allow a substantial proportion of the value created from our industry to be captured and retained within our host countries. Minerals are finite resources. We are therefore increasingly focused on strategies which support sustainable economic development. The Local Content Policy is one such example. This is aimed at fostering skills as well as encouraging and supporting an increased service, industrial and manufacturing capacity in Sierra Leone. Last year the Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines signed a Declaration of Cooperation that committed our industry to working with the Government and other partners to progress the implementation of the Local Content Policy. So too have issues of transparency and accountability become more critical to our stakeholders, and Sierra Leone’s achievement of Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) compliance this year was an important step towards that goal. Through the EITI, we will be able to see accurate and verifiable data on what the extractives sector is actually contributing to Sierra Leone’s economy. The recent past has been a turbulent one for our sector. Weak commodity prices have had a substantial negative impact on our share prices. It is reflective of the new era of mining in Sierra Leone that the challenging economic climate has not impacted on our commitment to becoming partners in the development of Sierra Leone and its economy. Mining companies in Sierra Leone have sought to do things independently and individually for too long. The industry-wide realisation that it would be far more efficient and beneficial to us within the mining sector, to have one body advocating on behalf of our industry, along with promoting its growth and fostering its development has given rise to the Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines. We look forward to working with all our stakeholders to develop an industry that every Sierra Leonean will regard with pride. John Bonoh Sisay President, Chamber of Mines and Chief Executive Officer, Sierra Rutile Ltd

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