Ghana’s Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor has mounted a strong argument to refute claims that the country’s deal with Barari DV Ghana Ltd for the mining of lithium is a bad one.
According to him, government's royalties of 10% in the deal with Barari is the highest in the world, making the deal one of the best the country has ever signed for the extraction of minerals.
Barari DV Ghana Ltd, a subsidiary of Atlantic Lithium Limited, has been granted a fifteen (15) year Mining Lease to start the construction and mining of lithium at Ewoyaa in the Mfantseman Municipality of the Central Region.
In the last few weeks, many have raised concerns about the deal, insisting that Ghana should have a bigger share in mining the mineral.
Speaking at a forum organised by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) in Accra on Tuesday, November 28, former Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo expressed concern as she described the deal as a ‘Guggisberg-type’ agreement.
“It is not different in principle in the substance from any of Ghana’s previous colonial times types of agreements, some call it the Guggisberg model, whatever description, all those agreements are colonial type of agreements, which over the years have yielded very little good to the overall benefit of the average Ghanaian,” she said.
Addressing a Press Conference in Accra today, Lands and Natural Resources Minister Samuel Abu Jinapor welcomed all criticism. He assured Ghanaians that the deal with Barari DV Ghana Ltd is in the country’s best interest.
“We successfully negotiated 10%. When you go to Australia which controls some of the biggest deposits of lithium their royalties rate is 5%. When you go to Mail which has a bigger lithium deposit, they charge 6%. When you go to Zimbabwe, they have a bigger deposit of lithium than we do and they charge 5%. Your government, the Ghanaian government has negotiated for 10%,” the Minister argued.
She said in addition to the 10% royalties negotiated, government is also charging a corporate income tax of 35%, also very high when compared to what other governments are charging for the mining of lithium in their country.
“For example, when you look at the corporate income tax rate. What we are charging here in Ghana is 35%. Australia is charging 30%, Mali is charging 30%, Zimbabwe is charging 25%, and we have negotiated for 35% for corporate income tax. Then somebody says this is a bad deal, throw it away. I want to assure every Ghanaian that user President Akufo-Addo whatever we do with our mineral resources including lithium will be in the internet of the Ghanaian people and will be done with the utmost respect for transparency,” Lands and Natural Resources Minister Samuel Abu Jinapor assured.