The next National Democratic Congress government will set up a gold board to regulate and support the small-scale mining sector, John Dramani Mahama, the NDC flagbearer has said.
He said the service support would range from concession viability, health, safety and efficiency in mine operations, equipment financing and mining input, research and standardisation, gold recovery optimisation and land reclamation services.
Speaking at the launch in Accra of the party’s manifesto, christened “The People’s Manifesto”, Mahama said the next NDC government would develop a national policy to restructure small-scale mining and persuade miners to undertake skills training in land reclamation as a required component of their operations, to minimise the environmental impact of their activities.
“Gold Board will issue licences to Ghanaian companies and foreign companies with local partners, giving clear geographical boundaries as their catchment area for production,” he said.
Iif voted into power, his government would introduce an offtaker system for refined gold with a buying programme, under which the Bank of Ghana (BoG) would refine gold as part of its new precious metal reserve purchasing programme.
He said the party would ban the export of unrefined gold and that gold refineries in gold-producing regions would be established in conjunction with the private sector to add value to the precious metal.
Promote indigenous businesses
Mahama said the next NDC government will aggressively promote and protect Ghanaian businesses to ensure greater indigenous control of the economy
The NDC would also enhance the current environment for foreign direct investment (FDI).
Under his leadership, Mahama said, local economic development would be the bedrock of Ghana’s national development strategy.
“Existing laws and policies that constrain the growth of the private sector will be reviewed, amended, or eliminated,” he said.
“We will continue to work with key stakeholders, such as the Association of Ghana Industries, the Private Enterprise Federation (PEF), the Ghana Union of Traders’ Associations (GUTA), and other identifiable groups like the market associations, mechanics, tailors and barbers to ensure greater private sector participation.”
Mahama also announced that the party will collaborate with the private sector to establish agro-processing factories across the country based on regional comparative advantage.
This, he said, will promote private sector development and make the Ghanaian industry internationally competitive, and will protect consumer interests and safety.