Agreement between Rwanda and mining company Rio Tinto to mine lithium

Rwanda has signed an agreement with Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto for the exploration and exploitation of lithium in the East African country, the two partners announced on Monday January 29.
The agreement reflects the government’s “efforts to stimulate and modernize Rwanda’s mining sector”, said Yamina Karitanyi, CEO of state-owned Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board, in a joint statement by the two parties. Rio Tinto’s entry into the market “marks Rwanda’s determination to further unlock the potential of the country’s mining sector”, she also stressed.
The Australian group is “delighted to partner with the Rwandan government and leverage its global experience to accelerate the search for primary lithium deposits in Rwanda’s Western Province”, said Lawrence Dechambenoit, Rio Tinto’s Global Head of External Affairs.
Lithium is an essential material in the manufacture of batteries used in electric cars, smartphones and other electronic devices.
Last August, Ms. Karitanyi told a conference on mining in Rwanda that the country’s mining sector was “on track” to reach its target of one billion dollars in revenues by 2023. In particular, she welcomed the fact that the sector had seen “a remarkable increase in the production of tin, tantalum and tungsten, gold, lithium and precious stones, generating a 45.6% increase in mineral export revenues compared to last year”.


About Geraldine Boechat 2764 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia