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Shake-up for Senegal mining?

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Shake-up for Senegal mining?
Senegal’s newly elected President Bassirou Diomaye Faye said that one of the first policy moves will be to conduct an audit of the oil, gas, and mining sectors. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

Shake-up for Senegal mining?

Senegal’s mining, oil and gas sectors might be in for a shake-up under newly elected President Faye  

By Leon Louw owner of WhyAfrica and editor of the WhyAfrica magazine   

With elections behind them and a new president in the driving seat, Senegal’s mining sector will be interesting to follow in 2024.

In his first address to the nation on Wednesday newly elected President Bassirou Diomaye Faye said that one of the first policy moves will be to conduct an audit of the oil, gas, and mining sectors. In the same speech he reassured foreign investors that they are “welcome in Senegal.”

At the moment the government of Senegal has a 10% interest in most mining and exploration operations in the country.

“The exploitation of our natural resources, which according to the constitution belong to the people, will receive particular attention from my government.

“I will proceed with the disclosure of the effective ownership of extractive companies (and) with an audit of the mining, oil, and gas sector,” he said.

Senegal is known mainly as a gold, phosphate and mineral sands producer. There are several producing mines in operation and more exploration projects in the pipeline.

Five biggest mines in Senegal

In 2021, according to Global data (https://www.globaldata.com/data/) the Grande Cote Project in Dakar, was the largest mine in Senegal, producing approximately 46.63 million metric tons per annum (mmtpa) of Run-of-Mine (ROM) and primarily produced leucoxene (1,284.88 thousand ounces) in 2021. The Grande Cote Project is owned by the government of Senegal and Eramet SA and is due to operate until 2046.

The second largest mine with approximately 6.5 mmtpa of ROM and primarily producing gold (320.15 thousand ounces), was the Sabodala Mine, located in Tambacounda. Sabodala is owned by Endeavour Mining Corp and the government of Senegal and is due to operate until 2039.

Taiba Phosphate Mine located in Kaffrine was the third-largest mine, the Mako Gold Mine located in Tambacounda was the fourth-largest mine, and the Matam Phosphate Mines located in Matam was the fifth-largest mine, with an estimated ROM production of 2.92 mmtpa, 2.59 mmtpa and 0.93 mmtpa, respectively, in 2021.

The Taiba Phosphate Mine is owned by Indorama and the government of Senegal, the Mako Gold Mine is owned by government and Resolute Mining, which is expected to operate until 2027, and the Matam Phosphate Mines is owned by Societe Miniere de la Vallee du Fleuve Senegal.

Thor’s gold exploration (Shake-up for Senegal mining?)

In the same week of the new president’s address to the nation, Thor Explorations, a TSX and AIM listed company, announced that it has acquired two licences in southeast Senegal where it is currently advancing the Douta Gold Project to a Preliminary Feasibility stage.

Thor Explorations is a mineral exploration company engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development and production of mineral properties located in Nigeria, Senegal and Burkina Faso.

According to Segun Lawson, President and CEO of Thor Exploration, the company has acquired up to 85% in the strategically located Douta-West licence which lies contiguous to the Douta Gold Project and an up to 80% interest in the Sofita Licence located approximately 20km south of the Douta Gold Project.

Lawson says that the government of Senegal will retain a 10% interest as per the current mining laws of Senegal.

“We are pleased to acquire additional, strategically located, ground in Senegal where we have been successfully operating and advancing the Douta Gold Project for a number of years. We are currently carrying out our preliminary feasibility study workstreams at the Douta Gold Project and look forward to now completing this during Q3 2024 following finalisation of the process flow sheet.

“The acquisition of the Douta-West permit, which has a number of geochemical targets, allows us to potentially add scale to the Douta Gold Project, in particular, extensions to Makosa Tail. We look forward to commencing exploration on this new permit with our existing exploration team and from our exploration camp at Douta.

“We are excited by the year ahead, where we are continuing exploration at our wholly-owned Segilola Gold mine to expand its life of mine, completing the preliminary feasibility study for Douta and will commence exploration on our newly acquired licences.

This exploration strategy is in addition to generating cash flow from our wholly-owned Segilola Gold Mine in Nigeria, where we have a guidance of 95,000 to 100,000 ounces in 2024, which we’ll use to completely de-leverage the Company’s balance sheet from its senior debt facility this year.”

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Shake-up for Senegal mining?

Shake-up for Senegal mining?

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 Shake-up for Senegal mining?

Shake-up for Senegal mining?


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