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09.04.2008 Business & Finance

Strategic investor for GCD soon - 3 companies shortlisted

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Three companies have been short listed by the Divestiture Implementation Committee (DIC) to take over the Ghana Consolidated Diamond (GCD) after 15 years of searching for a strategic investor, Mrs Esther Obeng Dappah, Minister Land, Forestry and Mines, said on Tuesday.

Taking her turn at the Meet-The-Press series in Accra, Mrs Dappah said one of the companies would be approved within the next few days to enable the company to resume operations soon.

Government has already paid about 16 billion cedis in salary arrears to workers of the defunct GCD.

Giving the performance on mining sector, Mrs Dappah said since 2001 a total of 4.9 billion dollars had been invested in the sector resulting in a substantial increase in the minerals produced over the period.

She said two new mines - Newmont Ahafo and Chirano - had been established as a result of adoption of sound policies.

She mentioned the continued presence of illegal miners on legitimate concessions of mining companies, identification of mercury-free gold processing methods for small-scale gold miners and continued reliance on the exploitation of only the traditional minerals as some of the challenges facing the sector.

The Minister said, although the sector had seen great improvement over the years, there was still room for improvement, adding that the Ministry would continue to address the various challenges identified for the benefit of the country.

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