QMM celebrates 10 years of production this year. The opening ceremony was held in the city of Fort-Dauphin, in which the company is located, last Friday, November 23rd.
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Reduce the dependency of the local population
“Do not forget the other resources. Our goal in the next 20 years is to reduce the dependence of the Anosy region on QMM!”
This was the conclusion of Ny Fanja Rakotomalala, Chief Executive Officer of Rio Tinto QMM (Qit Madagascar Minerals), last Friday, during his speech at the opening ceremony of the 10-year production of the mining company, in the city ??of Fort-Dauphin.
The city of Fort-Dauphin currently has more than 80,000 inhabitants, against the half 20 years ago. About 50% of the budget of the city of the city is derived from the rebates of the mining company Rio-Tinto QMM. Worried, the leaders of the mining company wish that the dependence of the local population on the mineral resources could be reduced.
The production of ilmenite began in 2008. The prospection began in 1986. Since these 10 years of production, the city of Fort-Dauphin has developed, particularly in terms of road infrastructure, schools, conditions of life of the population. Indeed, QMM has offered support to the local population in several sectors: energy, agriculture, livestock, industrial maintenance, reforestation, education …
An other example: QMM collaborated with Jirama in the supply of electricity, through the construction of an electric substation of 33,000 volts. A contribution that made it possible to eliminate power cuts in the city.
Although successful, these QMM aids to the population have been addictive to the population. An addiction that places QMM more in a position of governors, instead of investors.
Diversification of activities
Solutions are proposed by QMM to restore balance in the community. According to the Chief Executive Officer, sustainable solutions must be brought. Diversification of economic activities in the region would be a way forward. Similarly, sound management of natural resources, strengthening public-private partnership, respect for rights and the law, as well as a good land policy, would greatly contribute to the development of society, as he quoted of the interview.
In addition to mining resources, Fort-Dauphin has other economic potentials. Among other things, fishing and tourism, as explained by Salohy Dewa, director at the Department of Tourism in Fort Dauphin. Handicraft is also a growing sector.
According to the official statistics of the Ehoala port, the production of ilmenite by QMM has multiplied over the years. In 2015, production is less than 177,000 tonnes. In 2016, QMM produced 255,000 tonnes. In 2017, double production with 481,000 tons of ilmenite product. Last September, according to the latest figures in the port of Ehoala, 332,000 tonnes of imenite were produced.
“Production is still low compared to expectations of 750,000 tonnes a year,” said Zo Rabearivelo, chairman of the Ehoala Port Users Committee.