Ethiopia’s virtually untapped, diverse and vast mineral resources offer huge potential opportunities for exploration and development. This potential coupled with improving government policies and regulations means Ethiopia is fast becoming a destination of choice for international mining investors and developers. Mining is considered essential to driving plans for inclusive growth in the country and as a diversification from agriculture, with the “transformative potential” of the mining sector reflected in Ethiopia’s strategies. Currently, mining comprises approximately 3% of GDP. Ethiopia’s richly resourced mining sector has been attracting global interest in recent years, with 106 exploration licenses and about 110 mining licenses issued between January and June 2020.
Some of the opportunities for investing are to be found in the following commodities:
- Metallic minerals (gold, platinum, iron, nickel, chromite, and base metals
- Fertilizer raw minerals (potash and phosphate)
- Gemstones (sapphires, emeralds, fiery opals)
- Energy minerals (lithium, graphite and tantalum, oil shale and coal)
- Cement raw minerals (limestone, gypsum, clay, pumice)
- Ceramics raw minerals (kaolin, feldspar)
- Glass raw minerals (silica sand)
- Dimension stones (marble, granite, limestone, sandstone, diatomite, bentonite, soda ash, salt, graphite and Sulphur)
- Natural gases and hydrocarbons
Ethiopia’s vision for the mining sector is to establish a diverse, world-class, competitive, and environmentally sound private sector-led mining industry, based on transparent free-market principles, contributing not less than 10% of the GDP. This creates many opportunities for suppliers, manufacturing companies, professionals, and technology companies to conduct business and hold industry sector meetings within the country.