During 2011, Ncondezi and the Government of Mozambique agreed a three-year Social Development Plan (“SDP”) with a US$2m budget and a Memorandum of Understanding (“MoU”) was signed with the Ministry of Mineral Resources in December 2011. The specific initiatives which will be implemented are currently under final review with the provincial and district government authorities.
The SDP will be implemented between 2012 and 2015, and the planned corporate social responsibility initiatives will benefit the local communities across the Ncondezi Project, the Moatize District and selected other communities in Tete and Mozambique.
In addition to the social projects planned under the SDP, a number of social projects were implemented in 2011, including:
- a bursary award for four postgraduate Mozambican students;
- donation of bicycle ambulances and carriers to local villagers; and
- repairs to the local rural medical clinic.
Postgraduate Bursary Awards
Bursary offers were made to four exceptional Mozambican students for postgraduate studies abroad, two in Geology and two in Mining Engineering. The geology students are studying for an MSc in Mining and Geological Engineering at Coimbra University in Portugal. The mining engineering students are in the process of applying for postgraduate studies abroad.
Bicycle Ambulances and Carriers
Twenty bicycle ambulances and 20 bicycle carriers were donated to the local communities and horticultural farmers on the Ncondezi Project licence areas. These are to be used for the transportation of people in medical need to the nearest clinic in Mameme 2. The carriers allow local farmers to carry their produce to the local market place along the main road at Mpassi.
Mameme 2 Rural Clinic
Repair work has been completed at the Mameme 2 Rural Clinic, providing solar power and medicine refrigerator facilities.
Maize Field Compensation
In 2011 a total of 214 maize fields affected by exploration access roads were compensated and US$19,323 was paid out in local currency as compensation.
An External Environmental Audit was conducted in May 2011 and, whilst the environmental performance of the Company was considered to be good, an Environmental Action Plan has been established to ensure that the Company maintains its high standards.
Standard operating procedures and best practice management plans dealing with environmental issues were developed and implemented for the Company’s and its contractors’ use throughout 2011.
Ncondezi has commissioned an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (“ESIA”) study on the Ncondezi Project to be completed in parallel with the DFS. The ESIA has been designed to meet Mozambique legislation requirements and standards of international best practice. Expected completion of the ESIA is in Q3 2012 in line with the DFS.
During 2011, public consultation meetings on the ESIA process were undertaken in Tete and Moatize with broadly positive responses recorded.
In August 2011, the Environmental Prefeasibility and Scoping Study Report and Terms of Reference for the Ncondezi Project were reviewed and approved by the Ministry for the Co-ordination of Environmental Affairs. This gave the green-light for Ncondezi to proceed with and complete the ESIA.
Following these approvals, environmental baseline studies were completed for:
- Air Quality
- Aquatic Ecology
- Avifauna Ecology
- Mammalian Ecology
- Surface Water
This information will be used to improve environmental performance and assist in government decision making and permitting.