18 April 2006
The European Union (EU) and Southern African Development Community (SADC) have launched a new drive to facilitate European investor funding in 100 mining projects in the southern African region.
According to Mining Weekly, this is the third mining initiative launched by the EU-SADC Investment Promotion Programme (Esipp), following similar initiatives in 1994 and 2000.
Esipp, a joint EU-SADC programme designed to attract foreign investment in the region, brings together European and southern African entrepreneurs in five targeted sectors: construction and building materials, tourism, light engineering, agro-industry and mining.
According to Mining Weekly, Esipp has begun the process of identifying mining projects in 12 of the SADC’s 14 member countries, with regional workshops having already taken place in Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland.
Once identified and validated, the projects will be presented to potential EU investors at a meeting – dubbed Mines 2006 – in Lusaka, Zambia in November.
In November 2005, Esipp hosted a similar investment promotion conference for the building materials and construction sector, followed by a conference for the light engineering sector in February 2006.
Tourism 2006, an event taking place in Namibia in October, will bring together potential EU and SADC business partners in tourism, while projects and investors in the agro-industry sector will be catered for in 2007.