World Bank: Serbia can become a global supplier of lithium and copper ores

With the implementation of the mining projects Cukaru Peki and Jadar, the mining’s sector share in Serbia’s GDP can rise from the current 2% to 5%, said the representative of the World Bank in Serbia Stephen Ndegwa, estimating that the Serbian mining sector has enormous potential for growth with the creation of many jobs.

When it comes to mining in Serbia, says Ndegwa, the World Bank sees the potential to boost the country’s economy, but for the sector to achieve its full potential, there is a need for major reform of the mining sector and strong cooperation between the private and public sectors.

At the ninth international conference on mineral resources in Serbia, Ndegwa also said that, according to the World Bank’s research, the country has strong potential to become a leader and participate in the future of Europe, but that the key question is whether Serbia is ready to seize the opportunity.

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He believes that the Serbian government will make a good decision if it accepts the suggestions of the World Bank regarding the mining sector, considering that Serbia has the potential to become a global supplier of lithium and copper minerals. He recalled that currently about 35 companies have 130 mining projects in the country, and added Serbia is an attractive destination for mining companies.

“We estimate that the two research projects, Cukaru Peki and Jadar, will boost the mining sector’s share in the national GDP from 2% to 5%. To exploit this potential, governance in the mining sector is necessary,” said Ndegwa, citing that a study on the mining sector reveals that no major mines have been opened in Serbia in the last two decades.

He recommended that the Serbian government develop a national vision for mining in order to encourage its development in the light of new discoveries of mineral resources.

“This will put Serbia in a new position. The opportunity requires cooperation between the private and public sectors. It is important that the government works closely with the private sector,” said Ndegwa, adding that when it comes to mining, it is important to involve local communities. Basically, where mines are opened, local infrastructure is not developed, so this is an opportunity for private mining companies and the state to come together to finance road construction.

(B92, 05.11.2019)

https://www.b92.net/biz/vesti/srbija.php?yyyy=2019&mm=11&dd=05&nav_id=1613045

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