The government has challenged geological sciences students studying in public and private universities to focus on becoming specialists who would contribute towards growth of the mining sector’s input to the economy.
The call comes as the sector only contributes one percent to the national Growth Domestic Product.
Speaking at a mining seminar at The Polytechnic in Blantyre on Friday, Director of Geological Survey Department, Jalf Salima, said government recognises mining as a sector that could lead to sustainable economic growth.
“Mining is new; as such, initiatives were put forward to promote mining activities. One of those is capacity building and to achieve that, there is need to introduce mining related courses in our universities,” Salima said.
He said the sector, which was at the verge of collapsing in 2010, is recovering due to increase in commodity prices, market capitalisation and improvements in key activities such as exploration.
Former Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Environment, Grain Malunga, said systematic regulations would also help towards growth of the sector.
“The Mining Act would go a long way towards getting artisans and small scale miners groups formalised, give them access to finance for growth and push for sustainable development of the environment”, Malunga said.
Principal of The Polytechnic, Grant Kululanga said the institution is committed to contributing towards growth of the sector