Mineral resources and the alleviation of povertry in Africa
Author(s)/Corporate Author (s)United Nations. Economic Commission for Africa;
United Nations. Economic Commission for Africa;
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Africa has an impressive mineral wealth. As compared to the rest of the world, Africa's share of known mineral deposits amounts to: 71.4 percent of cobalt, 39.7 percent of chromium, 46.1 percent of diamond, 29.1 percent of gold, 22.4 percent of manganese, 22.7 percent of phosphate rock, 48.4 percent of platinum, 32.5 per cent of uranium, 49.2 per cent of vanadium, 11 percent of titanium, 10 percent of alumina silicate and 8 percent of coal. This is in addition to a variety of other minerals including gemstones of which Africa produces more than 250 varieties. Yet despite this enormous mineral endowment Africa remains stricken by poverty as the continent appears to have failed to plough back its substantial earnings from mineral exports into productive activities and in particular for the benefit of the mining communities or where the deposits were extracted. Indeed, Africa has todate been unable to replace its non-renewable mineral resources with other sustainable assets and development opportunities, with economically disastrous effects. More often than not the mining sector remained an export enclave where minerals were exported in their raw state with little or no alueadded. Even South Africa, by for the most industrialized African economy, exports more than 78 percent of its mineral production.