SMM: mining Minister Vikitobo Sam Sony (Willy Kitobo Samsoni) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo plans to meet with mining companies to reach an agreement to suspend workers' access to the new crown virus epidemic area.
Last month, civil society groups called for an end to the mine blockade imposed by copper and cobalt mining companies to avoid coronavirus outbreaks.
Samsoni said in a statement on Sunday that it would contact mining companies and issue orders to end the blockade, taking into account individual needs.
Samsoni said all mining companies must find "appropriate solutions to protect companies and workers who have been separated from their families for a long time".
Speaking from the center of the Congolese copper belt, Samsoni also talked about the difficulties the epidemic has caused to the mining industry. The mining industry is an important part of the Congolese economy, accounting for 32 per cent of the country's GDP and 95 per cent of export earnings in 2018.
"the new crown virus has dealt a major blow to mining activities," it said. "
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