Africo Resources signs MOU with DRC Ministry of Social Affairs

Africo Resources subsidiary in the DRC, Swanmines, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the DRC’s Ministry for Social Affairs. The MOU is designed to ensure that Swanmines’ social development programs will be aligned with local areas of need as identified by the Ministry. This is the first agreement of this kind to be signed with a mining company in Katanga Province and only the second in the DRC.

Africo Resources says it “is committed to being a responsible resource company that has a positive sustainable impact on the communities surrounding its operations. This vision is reflected not only in the work already done at Kalukundi and in the surrounding communities, but also through the agreement signed with the International Finance Corporation in July 2007.” 

Swanmines’ social development initiatives will be led by Africo’s country manager, Grant Pierce. He was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for his personal contribution to social development in rural Tanzania in 2003 and is keen to replicate that success in the DRC. “We are pleased with the development initiatives we have implemented to date and working with the Ministry of Social Affairs will ensure that Africo and Swanmines have a significant and positive impact on the development of the DRC.”

The Minister for Social Affairs, Professor Martin Bitijula Mahimba, has pledged the Ministry’s support to Swanmines. “We are delighted to sign this agreement. It is one normally signed with NGOs, we are no longer content with mining companies short-changing this country, simply taking what they need and putting nothing back into development activities, we need programs that remain sustainable when the companies depart.”

Through H&J Swanepoel Famille Trust, Swanmines is Africo’s operating entity within the DRC, and is in the process of developing its Kalukundi asset in partnership with Gecamines. Kalukundi is a development stage copper-cobalt deposit located on the Katangan Copperbelt. The development team has an operational base in the DRC, with the company corporate offices located in Vancouver, Canada.