Accra, Aug. 10, GNA - Dr Majeed Hauron, Deputy Minister of Mines, on Tuesday said Ghana stood a better chance of becoming an economic giant if its human resources were developed to exploit its rich natural resources.
He said though Japan and Switzerland had little to boast of in terms of natural resources, with maximum attention paid to human resource development, the countries had much to demonstrate when it came to industrial and technological advancements.
Dr Majeed said this at a day's workshop to disseminate information about research findings on the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining Sector in Ghana.
The research formed part of a project on: "Increasing the Contribution of the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining Sector to Poverty Reduction Targets," which was inaugurated by the British Department for International Development (DFID) with the aim of understanding the livelihood and challenges facing the Artisanal Small-Scale Mining (ASM) communities in Ghana.
Dr Majeed said there were many unidentifiable challenges facing the Mining Sector, which needed the attention of everyone and asked the participants to use the knowledge from the workshop to help to address them.
He urged the 'Bigger' Mines to share their experiences about the use of the environment with the small-scale miners in order to minimise the negative consequences of their activities on the environment. Dr Majeed commended the researchers for the presentation and expressed the hope that their findings would serve as blueprints to help solve the problems facing the ASM in Ghana.
Mr Ben Aryee, Executive Director of Minerals Commission, observed that in spite of Government's efforts at reducing poverty in the country, little had been done in the area of the ASM to complement such efforts.
Ms Anna Antwi, Agriculture and Food Security Coordinator, ActionAid Ghana, said the Small-Scale Mining Sector was one the sectors in the economy where poverty was hard hitting. The Participants were drawn from the Mining Companies; Small-Scale Mining Association; Ghana Education Service; Western Region; Western University College and Ghana Mine Workers' Union.