Data sharing on the socio-economic and human rights impact of mining in Tanzania

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Tanzania, May 2019  

Since January 2017, IPIS has been working on a project to map the socio-economic and human rights impact of mining in northwest Tanzania. This project is supported by the Belgian development cooperation under a programme on human rights and digitisation. By using mobile technologies such as mobile data collection, GIS mapping, mobile incident reporting and phone surveys through interactive voice recording (IVR), IPIS is working to fill important information gaps on mining in Tanzania.

Since the start of this project, IPIS has been engaging intensively with various stakeholders in Tanzania to ensure that the data would support them in their respective mandates to improve the governance and impact of the mining sector. In May 2019, we shared key findings with these stakeholders in Tanzania and discussed how these can be turned into actionable insights.

The central stakeholders of this project are the Tanzanian mining authorities. During an intensive feedback workshop in Dodoma we discussed project findings with representatives of the Tanzanian Ministry for Minerals, the Mining Commission, the Geological Survey of Tanzania (GST) and the Mineral Resources Institute (MRI). The workshop covered the report, map and database on the nature, scope and impact of artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) in northwest Tanzania, preliminary findings on community perceptions regarding large-scale mining (LSM) in Geita, Shinyanga, Mara and Kigoma, and the mobile incident reporting and survey platform for mining communities. We agreed with the mining authorities to continue cooperation on improving the evidence base on mining in Tanzania.

Subsequently, we shared and discussed findings with a diverse group of stakeholders from Tanzanian and international civil society, government, international community and industry in Dar es Salaam. The Belgian ambassador to Tanzania opened the meeting with a key note address. Following presentations by IPIS, participants brought various interesting issues to the discussion, including wealth spillovers from small and large-scale mining, the sector’s employment generation, the fight against mineral smuggling, the use of mercury in small-scale gold processing and women rights. IPIS will integrate these pertinent insights and feedback in its further work on unraveling the socio-economic and human rights impact of mining in Tanzania.

The Tanzanian Ministry for Minerals and the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG), two key partners in this project, explained how they are working to leverage these findings in order to maximise benefits and minimise the harms of the sector. The Assistant Commissioner for Minerals highlighted the fast pace of reform in the mining sector, including the establishment of mineral trading centres across the country to curb mineral smuggling and improve revenues from and oversight on small-scale mining. CHRAGG, Tanzania’s national human rights institution, explained how they are upgrading their complaint handling system to make it easier for individuals and communities affected by human rights harms, in the mining sector and beyond, to report grievances and access remedy.

IPIS will continue cooperation with these key stakeholders to ensure optimal use of the project’s outputs. In the coming months we will moreover publish additional reports and map layers on community perceptions regarding LSM and incident reporting.