Egypt minister calls for tenfold increase to GDP from mining sector

Egypt’s oil minister Tarek El Molla has called for the mining industry to increase its contribution to the national GDP tenfold by 2026, as the government looks to boost investment in the sector.

The ​Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources will support an investment-seeking programme in March, with Egypt hosting a virtual global mining show bringing together international mining corporations, investors, solution providers and governments.

Egypt has long been viewed as an under-exploited mining destination, with several mineral resources available including raw materials, metals, precious metals and minerals. The majority are concentrated in the Eastern Desert and the Sinai Peninsula.

The North African country’s only operating commercial mine is the Sukari Gold Mine, which has been operated by London-listed Centamin over the last 10 years. However, with external aid from independent consultants such as the UK’s Wood Mackenzie in 2018, the Egyptian government has been able to set policies to lure global investments.

In 2020, the government introduced a new regulation, effectively shifting the system from production sharing agreements to rent, royalty and tax systems. The new system has been put in place to tackle industry concerns and offer investor-friendly terms to the market.

In recent years, AngloGold Ashanti has achieved some exploration success in the Eastern Desert, while Barrick Gold won four gold exploration deals worth US$8.8 million in an international tender launched by Egypt last year.