Zambia to Start Licensing Uranium Mining

Source:

The uranium mining sector's new-kid-on-the-block, Zambia, will begin issuing yellowcake-mining licenses effective from June following a move this week by the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which approved its legal framework guiding activities surrounding the extraction of the metal.

The uranium mining sector's new-kid-on-the-block, Zambia, will begin issuing yellowcake-mining licenses effective from June following a move this week by the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which approved its legal framework guiding activities surrounding the extraction of the metal.

The country's government also hopes that, by promoting the uranium mining sector, it will be able to diversify its economy away from the traditional copper and cobalt mining.

"Much of the work has been done and the United Nations (agency) in charge of uranium regulations has had a look at our regulations and our programme," Minister of Mines and Minerals Development Kalombo Mwansa is quoted as saying by independent daily The Post of Zambia.

Mwansa said the guidelines also included storage and transportation of uranium and other radioactive minerals, and hoped that the country could begin producing and exporting uranium by 2009. Zambia has so far not awarded any licenses for the mining of uranium, a mineral that Mwansa once described as being dangerous, and most companies that have reported a find are mainly operating on exploration licences.

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