Despite the devastating economic repercussions of the global Covid-19 pandemic, Africa continues to be an integral component of the global financial system, says international technology company Minetec Smart Mining CTO Mustafa Yesilyurt.
The large mineral deposits across the continent and increasing demand for commodities provides Africa with a favourable economic disposition, he tells Mining Weekly.
“Meaningful technological integration in mining processes is the key to economic expansion in the mining sector and to promoting overall economic growth.”
However, there are several significant socioeconomic challenges faced in Africa, all with potentially worrying macroeconomic implications. The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated these challenges, says Yesilyurt, specifically those that stem from poor education, unemployment and poverty.
He notes that economic stagnation because of such causes is inevitable, however, “the important thing is to recognise and create new opportunities in times of economic depression”.
The current global economy has undoubtably experienced a recession.
However, as long as there is demand for energy, there will always be a demand for the minerals that the continent has to offer, says Yesilyurt.
The worsening socioeconomic conditions create uncertainties regarding the vitality and productivity of mining operations. As such, he advances that the economic risks associated with such mining operations can be mitigated by fully employing the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).
“The best course of action any company in this sector can potentially take is to digitalise. There is a productivity limit for each company, and this threshold is dependent on resource availability and the complexity of the logistics behind mining operations.
“It is essential to employ information systems that can optimise resource management and simplify mining operations. The mining sector is like a ‘strategy game’ and critical decisions must be made beforehand and not just in direct response to a situation.”
Meanwhile, resource management and allocation, as well as security, are significant
operational issues that potentially hinder the productivity of operations in Africa. As such, Minetec believes that its solutions can optimise mining operations by minimising losses and maximising productivity.
The company has designed comprehensive solutions that effectively record, analyse and present its clients with data regarding their resources and processes. Its intuitive user interface and design efficiently manage resources and prevent loss, theft or accidents.
“We aim to become the leading service provider for resource management and security in the mining market. We are an international enterprise resource planning company introducing the benefits of the 4IR, and our vision involves being the German technology company SAP SE equivalent to the mining sector,” Yesilyurt says.
He underscores that we live in a highly competitive world and so, Minetec has realised that companies in the mining sector do not significantly benefit from the advantages of recent technological advancements.
Once the company collected and analysed the data on the requirements of its target market, it saw an opportunity in this sector. Minetec invested millions to develop the necessary hardware and software to achieve its goals, and the company is happy about the results.
“Additionally, we aim to perfect our services by diversifying our client pool, which enables us to further develop our products using user feedback.”
He believes that as long as there is demand for energy, there will be a need for some form of mineral extraction, with clear evidence pointing to an increase in global energy requirements.
“Hence, we believe that companies that adhere to the 4IR and successfully integrate technology are bound to optimise their operations and succeed.”