Commission to host African Minerals Development Center

The UN Economic Commission for Africa handed over the African Minerals Development Center (AMDC) to the African Union Commission (AUC) following its inception in 2012.

The AMDC was endorsed by the 2nd conference of African Ministers responsible for Minerals Resource Development in 2011. It has been an African Union flagship project whose main aim was to coordinate the implementation of the Africa Mining Vision (AMV). AMV had been adopted in 2009 by Heads of State to ensure minerals contributed to the continent’s economic and structural transformation.

UNECA Executive Secretary, Vera Songwe, speaking at the handover ceremony on Friday thanked the AUC ‘for trusting and believing in our ability to host and incubate the AMDC for the last six and half years’.

“It is with great pride that we are gathered here to celebrate having a viable AMDC, which is now transitioning into an AU Specialized Agency. This handover is therefore an important milestone. It underscores the concrete programs, partnerships and prospects that demonstrate AMDC’s role as facilitator of choice, for African countries and their global partners seeking to realize AMV aspirations,” she said.

Ms. Songwe said going forward, continued collaboration among AMDC’s partners and stakeholders remained vital. She said the UNECA remained committed to supporting the AMDC’s work.

“Now we must ensure that AMDC’s work goes forward, as Africa strives to assert its agency in the strategic management of its mineral resources. In so doing, our credibility depends on the extent to which we remain true to Africa’s historic imperative for an AMV paradigm. That imperative applies yesterday, today and tomorrow,” she said.

For his part, the AUC Deputy Chairperson, Ambassador Kwesi Quartey, applauded the UNECA and partners, including the Canadian and Australian governments, for supporting and nurturing the AMDC to the level that enabled it to support member States.

“The AMDC has a footprint in more than 25 member States of the African Union. This is indeed a great achievement,” said Ambassador Quartey, adding enough resources had been mobilized to support the transition of the AMDC from UNECA to the AUC.