Rwanda receives colonial administration records on mining from Belgium

APA - Kigali (Rwanda)

The Belgium Embassy in Kigali on Saturday handed over to Rwanda a 10,000 page-archive of the colonial period on mining sector, an diplomatic source revealed in Kigali.

According to the Belgian ambassador to Rwanda, Benoît Ryelandt, the handover of new archives is part of pledge made by Belgian authorities to return all the Rwandan cultural heritage in general and to give Rwandan authorities access to the archives on their country.

The Central African Museum, located in Tervuren, Belgium, is home to many artifacts and documents carted away by missionaries and colonial administrators from Rwanda, Burundi and present-day DR Congo.

Starting in the 1930s when exploration and exploitation activities were dominated by Belgian investors, Rwanda’s mining sector has a long-standing history of private and public management.

Rwanda is home to a variety of gemstones including beryl (aquamarine), amblygonite, ruby, sapphire and different types of quartz.

According to the Government's Rwanda Mines, Petroleum, and Gas Board (RMB), the main minerals produced in the country are tin, tungsten, and tantalum (3Ts) of which the country is ranked among the top producers worldwide. Gold, gemstones, and rare earth elements, as well as a wide range of development minerals, such as industrial minerals and precious and semi-precious stones, are also found in significant quantities in Rwanda and are ripe for investment.

Critics from across the globe have always accused Rwanda of siphoning Coltan from neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and exporting it as with origin from Rwanda.

But Rwandan President Paul Kagame have always said that Rwanda harbours excessive tantalum minerals ‘of even good quality’ than others in the region.


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