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Mining strategy in the Republic Of Yemen

Introduction

A strategy is a comprehensive and integral planning process that deals with all the components of the targeted sector and is considered to be a form of the precautionary planning that is based on addressing the problems and constraints related to the targeted sector and working towards achieving the purposes and objectives of that planning. International experiences have proved that following the strategic planning methodology in the mining sector development is one of the motivating and attractive factors of mineral investment.

 This strategy has been implemented by YGSMRB in cooperation with UNESCWA for the sake of conducting a review of the technical and research programs, the infrastructure and the human resources and then proposing the recommendations and endorsing the applicable work plans in order to pinpoint the inputs the mining sector may bring about to the industrial sector in Yemen.

 The Strategy has relied on a number of studies carried out by the IFC which is an affiliate of the World Bank within the framework of a project to improve Yemen's mining environment and review the institutional frames of Yemen Geological Survey.


The vision:
Undertaking geological studies and owning the information that covers the Yemeni territory in terms of the geological formations and mineral resources to encourage investment in the mineral resource sector and inform the decision makers.

The Mission:
Serving the country and the society through provision of geosciences information, implementing geological surveys, exploring the mineral resources and prospecting their potentials and studying and assessing the environmental impacts of natural disasters in order to minimize the human and physical costs of such disasters and contribute to the creation of a scientific culture in the field of geosciences.

Objectives:
• Developing the scientific and technical capacities of the manpower working in the field of geosciences and mineral industries according to the international standards.
• Having the geological information that covers the Yemeni territory by developing the geological and thematic maps on various scales, conducting mineral exploration and research and carrying out geosciences research.
• Enforcing the Mines and Quarries Law in coordination with the relevant bodies.
• Attracting mining companies to invest in the available mining opportunities through the preparation and implementation of promotional plans and programs for the open areas.
• Increasing the added value of mineral resources.
• Extending the national labor force in the mining sector and the relevant support industries.

Assessment of the Current Situation:

The chronicles of over 3000 years of mining history in Yemen have been reviewed and shows that major gold, zinc and copper mineralization in Yemen have been known since the ancient times and were even exploited by the craft mining of the time. This was followed by another review of the present macroeconomic indicators of Yemen while emphasizing on the issue of the potential repercussions of the declining oil production in the country. It was concluded that the key macroeconomic reforms and the administrative reforms offered by Yemen shall place emphasis on economic diversification, local industry and the development of the industrial sector in which mining plays a vital role.

The geological environment and the mining prospects of Yemen have also been put forward. It was concluded that the main mineral industrial resources are abundant in Yemen and they could form the backbone of any future industrial sector. However, the mere mining of these resources or the dependency on one sole sector will not make up for the economic deficiency caused by forecast dwindling oil production.

In light of the review of the mining policy, the institutional, organizational and legislative setups, the current programs, the projects, the infrastructure, the human resources and the underlying knowledge structure of YGSMRB, it is concluded that the Board, despite its limited financial resources, has done an excellent job so far. However, there are serious shortcomings that need to be determined and addressed in the near future. The main conclusions of the current situation assessment are:
• The current and the proposed mining policy and the relevant legislation and regulations are generally compatible with the best international practices; there are no known items that may negatively affect the development of the mining sector and its contribution in the manufacturing process. Small amendments are to be made, especially in terms of enriching and adding value to the mined product.
• YGSMRB has to consider an explicit separation between the legislative and organizational authorities of the Mining Department; namely separating the YGSMRB from the department responsible for registration and licensing.
• It is necessary for the YGSMRB to consider the creation of a new institutional element that is assigned to provide scientific and technological services and consultancy for the small and medium mining processes.
• The existence and activation of the YGSMRB tasks is vital and necessary. It is taken for granted that the Board represents one of the national resources of Yemen. Hence, improvements and changes in the operational practices are proposed according to the methodological plans above.

The Mining Strategy:
• Human resources development.
• Scientific research development in various geosciences domains.
• Development of the necessary infrastructure to improve the mining industry.
• Preparation of geological and thematic maps on different scales, executing the exploration and mineral research activities and conducting geosciences research.
• Updating the central labs to include a lab for industrial studies.
• Promoting in all ways and methods investment in Yemen's mineral resources.

The Strategy's Programs

An objective is the desired end and a strategy is the pathway leading to that end through programs.

Human resources Development:

In order to implement the mining strategy in Yemen, one has to have the scientific and technical capacities. The key programs for human resources development are:
- Training the technicians in the YGSMRB in a number of fields in order to improve the service delivery level and acquire higher levels of professionalism and efficiency. These fields include geophysics, geochemistry, engineering geology, analytical chemistry, mines inspection and mining engineering.
- Establishing a center for labor force development in various industries related to mining such as a center for building and decoration stones technologies.
- Vocational training in various geosciences issues.
- Encouraging and supporting scientific research in the different applicable aspects of geosciences.
- Regular scientific publications (books, booklets, excerpts and researches) in accordance with internationally recognized standards.

Infrastructure development:

To realize the Strategy's objectives and optimally utilize the mineral resources and compete in the global markets, the necessary infrastructure must be obtained first to improve the mining industry and the transformational industries thereof. The main programs to improve the infrastructure are:
-    Restructuring the Board.
-    Updating the central laboratory.
-    Establishing a railway network connecting the mineral resources sites to the exportation ports. As a first phase, Mareb- AlJawf- Shabwa Railway network shall be established. For more information the Project Proposal
-    Creating mining-related industrial complexes such as industrial complexes for the building and decoration stones saws. For more information the Project Proposal

Improving the geological survey and mineral detection:

To have the information on various geosciences areas and serve the country and the community alike, the geological survey activities must be improved. The main executive programs to improve the geological survey and mineral exploration are:
- Maintaining the production of geological maps on a scale of 1:100,000 according to the international standards.
- Implementing detailed geological studies of the basement rocks especially with regard to age determination using Zircon which assists in understanding the evolution of the Precambrian regions and the metallic mineral prospecting.
- Continuing the geological and geophysical studies of the water basins in cooperation with the relevant bodies such as the Ministry of Water and Environment and the General Authority of Water Resources.
- Implementing detailed studies of sediments that may bear some important industrial minerals such as Bauxite, phosphate, Kaolin and gypsum and the accompanying evaporites such as sodium chloride and potassium chloride.
- Improving the metallic mineral detection programs in the basement rocks to involve definition of international similar models.
- Completing the geothermal power project in order to establish a power station and tourism sites in the areas of hot springs.
- Completing the Lithosphere hazards map, floods and coastal erosion.
- Developing the project of aerial geophysical data analysis and processing and implementing a gravity geophysical survey.
- Completing the necessary infrastructures to improve the marine geology department in order to contribute to the implementation of the marine geological survey.

Mineral promotion development:
For the mining companies to be attracted to invest in Yemen, the mineral promotion sector shall be developed using the latest means and methods. The main executive programs include:
- Synthesizing  a detailed book on Yemen's mineral resources.
- Intensifying the partnership in international seminars, conferences and exhibitions.
- Preparing promotional brochures and booklets.
- Updating the promotional web page of the Board on regular basis.
- Promoting through all media outlets.
- Preparing an atlas of the industrial minerals or rocks.
- Executing a project for Geological Information Base.

For more information
استرابتيجية التعدين في الجمهورية اليمنية
Mineral Strategy