Environment

325 tons of rare earth concentrates exported in six months

Rainbow Mining Burundi (RMB) has reached 25% of its objectives in 6 months of operation. According to the Director General of RMB, the fact of transferring the payment of exported products to the account of Burundi Central Bank and the lack of experienced personnel are the major challenges that company is facing.

Gilbert Midende, Director General of Rainbow Mining Burundi “We reached our goal at 25%."

Gilbert Midende, Director General of Rainbow Mining Burundi “We reached our goal at 25%.”

“After setting up a processing plant and implementing all the mining procedures during six months of work, we have already exported 325 tons of rare earth concentrates, an average of 100 tons per month which correspond to 25 tons per week, “says Gilbert Mindende, Director General of Gakara mining project operating in Kabezi and Mutambu communes of Bujumbura province.

Midende says these results are not satisfactory arguing that the current rainy season does not allow them to speed up their work. “We would have liked to go beyond, but with the rainy weather, we are often obliged to suspend our works,” he says. He also says RMB’s goal was to export 500 tons of rare earth concentrates pear year. That is 100 tons per week. “So, we reached our goal at 25%,” Midende says.

He indicates that for each export, Rainbow Mining Burundi pays a tax of 4%. “For 25 tons of rare earth exported we get US $ 62,000 and we pay US $ 8,000 to Burundi Revenue Authority,” says Midende adding that this tax is paid before exportation.

For Midende, the law adopted by Burundi Government requiring all companies to transfer their money to the account of Burundi Central Bank constituted a major challenge that RMB is currently faced with.

“When the money goes to the BRB account, it’s not yours anymore. The exporter has to follow several procedures to get it to pay for the services and various products, “says Midende adding that the company is also facing a problem of lack of experienced personnel.” In Burundi, there are neither metallurgists nor experienced mining engineers …” Midende says.

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