March 2016 – Newsletter

Minerals Commission to categorise small-scale mining

The Minerals Commission is to re-classify the small-scale mining sector as part of efforts to address the challenges posed by illegal mining.

The re-classification, which would spell out the activities and licensing requirements for miners, would classify the mining sector into three categories, namely: artisanal, small-scale and medium-scale mining.

This was made known by the Chief Executive of the Minerals Commission, Dr Tony Aubynn, yesterday, when he interacted with journalists in Accra.

He said the decision was considered after identifying some fundamental gaps in the current legislative framework and practices, which had made small-scale mining the preserve of Ghanaians above 18 years.

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South Africa wins global Diplomatic Service Award

The World Affairs Council in Washington, DC has named South Africa as the 2016 recipient of the Distinguished Diplomatic Service Award. The award was received last night (29 March 2016) by His Excellency Mninwa Mahlangu, Ambassador of South Africa to the United States, on behalf of the South African government.

South African is the first African country to receive this award.

The World Affairs Council Honors recognise organisations who demonstrate an outstanding commitment to global education, international affairs and global communications.

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said: “South Africa is truly humbled to receive this prestigious award. This recognition will further inspire and encourage our diplomats who work 24/7 around the world to advance our country’s national interests”.

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Trade and Industry hosts conference on fronting, 29 Mar

Conference on fronting to assist companies to implement the B-BBEE Act correctly.

The Broad–Based Black Economic Empowerment Commission (B-BBEE Commission), an entity within the administration of the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti), will hold a Conference on Fronting on 29 March 2016 at the Midrand Conference Centre, Midrand in Gauteng, from 8:30 – 16:00. The theme of the conference is Do it right and lead from the Front on Empowerment, and the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Rob Davies, and Deputy Minister Mzwandile Masina will deliver speeches.

The establishment of the B-BBEE Commission occurs in trying times where the previously marginalised are bemoaning the slow progress in economic transformation and empowerment, and in an environment where mostly the private sector, and government to a certain degree, laments the shortage of skills in industries deemed to be high priority for economic growth.

In addition to barriers to economic participation faced by black people in South Africa, such as access to finance and markets, it appears that fronting practices have become very prevalent as companies strive to achieve higher level B-BBEE status.

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MTN to commence 4G service mid year

Telecom giant MTN will begin rolling out its 4G service by the middle of 2016. MTN will join three other companies Surfline, Blu Telecoms, and Busy Ghana who are already rolling  4G services.

MTN in early December, 2015 won the bid for one frequency spectrum lot in the 800 MHz Band for mobile services. Prior to the auction the ICT Chamber had called on the National Communications Authority to only allow Ghanaian companies to auction for the license. The Chamber had argued that the move, if carried out by the industry regulator, would cause members of the chamber to lose more than the US$200 million they had so far invested in their businesses, out of which nothing had yet been recouped as return on investment.

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Total Launches ‘Startupper of The Year’ Challenge

Total Petroleum Ghana Limited, a leader in the Oil Marketing Industry, has launched an exiting challenge dubbed “Startupper Of The Year” aimed at identifying, rewarding and supporting the best projects in enterprise creation or development in Ghana.

Initiated by the Total Group in 34 African countries simultaneously, the contest open to startups or projects less than 2-years old. The winning projects will be conferred with the title, “Startupper of the year 2016 by Total”, with financial and coaching support from Total Petroleum Ghana.

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Introducing Ghana Trade website

The Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ghana, in pursuit of promoting Ghanaian Businesses, especially small and medium enterprises, is introducing its website, www.ghanatrade.gov.gh to the Diaspora Business community and investors.

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