“SL only country renewing certificates for mineral mining yearly”
Chairman, Amila Jayasinghe, Vice Chairman, A F M Farook Secretary Dr. Sandun Dalpatadu and Treasurer, Yaasir Nizam at the event. Picture by Sudath Malaweera
Sri Lanka is the only country in the world that issues yearly renewal certificates for mineral mining as against the global norm of renewing certification every 10 years, said Director CeyQuartz MBI (Pvt) Ltd and the Vice Chairman of the newly formed Chamber of Mineral Exporters (CME) A F M Farook.
“Even in India this certification is issued for a period of 10 years while in Australia it goes up to 15 years for renewal. Even the Australian Ambassador said that there are many investors keen in the mining industry but are reluctant to invest due to red tape. He said that due to this many global investors are reluctant to invest in this segment which can bring in a significant FOREX to Sri Lanka. Currently this segment attracts only around USD 65 million annually but with less red tape it can easily bring in global investors as well as increased revenue in excess of USD 160 million under two years.”
He said among the main goals of the new association is to position the mineral industry as a major export revenue generator for Sri Lanka. CME Chairman Amila Jayasinghe said they have to go to 8 government institutions to obtain approvals for mining and sadly this tedious process has to be repeated each year. Jayasinghe explained the manner in which the benefits of their industry could be channeled back to the country, due to the collaborative efforts of their association.
“The Chamber aims to utilize Sri Lanka’s mineral resources for economic growth, employment, and sustainable development. It marks a milestone by uniting key exporters towards a vibrant mineral resource industry but for this we need government assistance and less red tape,” said Treasurer Director Mirama Quartz Industries (Pvt) Ltd Yaasir Nizam.
The Association was launched with a collaborative initiative comprising prominent companies in Sri Lanka who mine, process, add value, and export minerals and mineral-based products in collectively addressing the challenges faced by the industry. The minerals available in Sri Lanka present an opportunity to increase the country’s international market presence to expand its global footprint. The Chamber aims to drive growth, innovation, and sustainable development in the mineral resource industry by leveraging resources effectively,” said Dr. Sandun Dalpatadu Secretary, Director Damsila Resources (Pvt) Ltd.