Angola has the aim to diversify its economy and effectively utilise its strong mineral resources with assistance from external financial support, and domestic economic reforms amid economic recovery from the impact of covid19.
According to the Kimberley Process’ figures, the country’s diamond mining sector was singularly worth $1.2 billion in 2019, and in that same year the Lucapa Diamond Company dug out a 130 carat diamond from its Lulo diamond project.
Angola’s developments and a diamond reserve total of about 180 million carats, shows significant potential for further diamond development in the country.
In addition to diamonds, Angola also produces gold, granite, marble, salt and gypsum, and also holds several undeveloped minerals with potential for extraction such as beryllium, copper, iron-ore, lead, ignite, nickel, silver, zinc, uranium amongst others.
A year ago, UK headquartered miner Pensana issued plans to upgrade a facility for mining neodymium and praseodymium which are rare commodities considered crucial to the production of electric vehicles and wind farms. The miner an increase in demand of 350% and 1,500% over the next 20 years respectively in these sectors.
In 2019 plans to lend Angola $250 million with hopes to achieve more sustainable and inclusive growth were made by the World Back, and in that same year in October the African Development Bank verified a $165 million loan to Angola in order to assist in diversifying the country’s economy.
In the near future Angola might actually be an attractive investment option for mining projects as it is luring investment from both the World Bank and the African Development Bank and is progressively diversifying its economy away from great reliance on oil and gas through implementing economic reforms.
Angola is not exactly considered to be one of the world’s mining kingdoms due to issues such as the country’s regulatory framework that acted as a disincentive to several foreign large-scale mining investors, and the alleged killing of a child and an adult by private security forces, who were involved in protests relating to artisanal mining, as reported by the Human Rights Watch in 2019.
These issues seemed to anchor some of the worst prejudices about the country’s mining sector, however, there are quite a number of reasons to be optimistic when it comes to the future mining of Angola such as the country’s promising mineral reserves, the growing government strength and a concluded report issued by the same Human Rights Watch stating that Angola had made progress towards assuring rights which include freedom of expression and assembly.
Angolan President Joao Lourenco who took office in 2017, issued an economic reform plan that emphasizes the steps that Angola has made towards upgrading and strengthening its mining industry.
Angola is one of the world’s largest diamond producers and the precious gem remains the country’s primary mineral export.
The British Geological Survey stated that, in 2016, Angola was considered to be one of the largest diamond producers at a sixth position in the world and as the third largest in Africa only being surpassed by Botswana and DRC, with an annual produce of 9 million carats