Significant growth for Africa’s mining sector in 2023


Mining in Mpumalanga. Photo by Exxaro

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE mining sector in the continent is primed for growth in 2023 on the back of several positive headwinds.

This according to an executive as the sector nonetheless still recovers from the post-pandemic slump and 2022 proved to be a turbulent year for the industry.

“The mining industry has seen its fair share of incredible highs and lows over the past decade, 2022 being no exception,” said Johann de Bruin, founder and Chief Executive Officer of Erudite.

Erudite is an engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) company with operations across Africa.

De Bruin noted South Africa faced prolonged strikes early in 2022, as well as continued energy woes, higher than usual rainfall, global supply chain disruptions and a volatile commodities market.

He however believes that exciting times lay ahead, offering four predictions for the mining sector in 2023: exchange rate slump, supply chain recovery, a surge in new projects and international opportunities.

The rand was 8,47 percent weaker year-on-year against the United Sates dollar in December 2022 but de Bruin notes that it seems likely that the ZAR/USD exchange rate will stabilise around current values over the next two years.

De Bruin believes that there will be a pronounced increase in industry investment for the exploration for new mineral deposits, founding of new mining operations and expansion of existing mines in the battery commodity market.

“The broader continent of Africa especially, has immense potential to quickly grow into a significant player in this market,” he said.

Demand for electric vehicles and other electronic devices is expected to see a sharp increase in the next few years.

“Many African nations with large deposits of key battery commodities have the potential to dominate this space,” the executive said.

Additionally, as the war in Ukraine seems set to further fuel global shortages of many commodities in 2023, Africa and South Africa, particularly, are poised to help resolve growing global demand issues.

De Bruin forecast as as an example, China’s severe congestion issues at industrial ports may reach the point of collapse in the coming year.

“The global reliance on Chinese exports is being tested, with most countries looking for alternative suppliers.”

China is the sixth largest commodities producer in the world, and de Bruin believes that Africa has the potential to gain market share if China’s issues continue.

Meanwhile, Erudite was recently awarded a large EPCM contract for a project in Limpopo, South Africa.

Nearly all of its existing projects across the continent have secondary phases in development.

– CAJ News





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