End of the third edition of the ECOWAS Mining and Oil Forum (ECOMOF): important recommendations made to promote the mining and oil sectors in West Africa18 Feb, 2022
Niamey, Niger, 18 February 2022. Strengthening the legislative and regulatory framework to improve the benefits of the geo-extractive industries is one of the main recommendations made by experts at the end of the 3rd edition of ECOMOF, the Mining and Oil Forum of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which ended on 18 February 2022 in Niamey, Niger.
At the end of the forum, the experts recommended that Member States and ECOWAS should promote the development of integrated infrastructure and the transformation of raw materials into finished products in order to create more added value. They also recommended the creation of a regional fund to help countries and businesses finance projects in the geo-extractive industries and promote research, innovation and development.
In addition, the experts called on Member States to develop policies and legal frameworks for the implementation of local content as well as initiatives to build the capacity of national businesses to meet the requirements of competitions.
Five other recommendations were made, namely (i) ensure good governance in the geo-extractive sectors to promote investment, (ii) adopt flexible and transparent procedures, notably through the establishment of digital platforms to promote the geo-extractive sector and attract more investment, (iii) put in place an effective and inclusive communication system to involve local communities in identifying local development needs, (iv) improve the geo-scientific and mapping information system so as to make it available, accessible and reliable, (v) ensure the environmental compliance of geo-extractive companies and promote the implementation of mechanisms for the recycling of waste from mining and petroleum exploration, are also part of the Forum’s conclusions.
Finally, the experts called for greater collaboration between governments and mining and petroleum companies to develop win-win partnerships to meet the growing demand for energy.
These important recommendations aim to contribute to a rational exploitation of the natural resources of the Community and better integration of the mining and oil industries in the development of regional value chains in order to create more added value.
The Niger’s Minister of Mines, Hon. Oussseini Hadizatou Yacouba, who closed the proceedings of ECOMOF 2022 in the presence of Hon. Mahamane Sani Mahamadou Issoufou, her colleague in charge of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energy, thanked the ECOWAS Commission for the successful organisation of the 2022 edition of the Mining and Oil Forum in her country.
Honourable Ousseini Hadizatou Yacouba was also pleased with the strong participation of ECOWAS Member States which included the presence of over ten Ministers including the Minister of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria.
It should be noted that the ECOWAS Commission was strongly represented at ECOMOF 2022 by a delegation led by Sédiko Douka, Commissioner for Energy and Mines, and including Mr Bayaornibè Dabire, Director of Energy and Mines, Mr William Baidoe, Head of Mining Development and Geological Resources Division, Mr Arkadius Koumoin, Programme Officer, Energy – Oil & Gas and Mr Abdelkader Mahamidou, Executive Assistant to the Commissioner for Energy and Mines.
The Forum was attended by over 60 exhibitors, 115 panellists, delegations from 24 African, European, South and North American countries, over 600 delegates, sponsors and about a thousand visitors.