Cabinet approves Mining Bill, 2014

 By PSCU

The bill seeks to facilitate the establishment of a vibrant minerals and mining sector (FILE)

The Cabinet Tuesday approved the Mining Bill 2014, and authorized its submission to parliament for debate.

The bill seeks to facilitate the establishment of a vibrant minerals and mining sector, attract substantial investments in geological mapping, capital development, exploration and exploitation of mineral resources, and make Kenya a hub for minerals processing, value addition and trade in the Eastern African region.

In order to effectively regulate activities in the minerals and mining sector, the Bill envisages the enactment of a clear, simple and transparent legal framework in line with the Constitution of Kenya 2010, the Jubilee Manifesto and Vision 2030 that seeks to turn Kenya into a middle income country by the year 2030.

The bill seeks to bench mark with the international best practice especially on issues of regulatory regime, royalties and engagement of communities and other stakeholders ensuring that benefits  accrued  from the mining sector not only benefit the current generation but fundamentally also the future generations.

Cabinet also pronounced itself on the following issues:

·        To enhance security of all Kenyans including strategic investments across the country.

·        Directed that all National Cereals and Produce Board depots be properly stocked with fertilizer on continuous basis through a revolving fund

·        All ministries and departments were directed to adopt targets settings culture and develop Smart work plans that ensures all staff are productively engaged and are more effective, efficient and ethical in delivery of quality services to wananchi. The ministries and departments should finalize the smart work plans/roadmaps within the next two weeks but clearly focusing on results to Kenyans

·        The cabinet also directed prompt payment of farmers upon delivery of their maize to NCPB.

·        The cabinet also approved Kshs 2.3 billion to improve the stocks in the strategic grain reserve

·        The cabinet appreciated that 600,000 title deeds country wide have been finalized

·        The NCPB will continue to purchase maize from farmers to boost the available stocks for the strategic grain reserves. Adequate funds have been provided by the National Treasury for this purpose.

·        Cabinet further directed the Ministries of Agriculture, Devolution and Planning, Environment and Water, to continuously monitor the situation in regard to food, water and pasture availability, and advice on additional measures to avoid a crisis situation.