The more than 5 500 delegates expected at this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba can expect a more robust investor programme and a wider but more thematic approach to the conference agenda, which will especially address the growing interest in infrastructure investments to support new and current mining projects.
One of the main points of discussion on infrastructure development at the Cape Town-based event will involve insight into its positioning parallel to the development of mining projects, event organiser Mining Indaba MD Jonathan Moore states.
The demand for downstream applications and the progress of mining companies, in terms of meeting their sustainability benchmarks, are also “hot on the agenda”, he notes, adding that the event will also discuss specific metals and minerals that are poised for an increase in demand and/or are receiving the attention of investors.
Moore tells Mining Weekly that the main commodities listed on the agenda are rare earths, copper, diamonds, gold and platinum, with targeted sessions on graphite and phosphates also featured.
He further highlights the event’s panel discussions on the downstream applications of metals and mining in current industrial and consumer goods markets.
In addition, the mining sector’s progress regarding innovation and technology and what this means for the long-term sustainability of the industry will be emphasised.
However, the main focus of the event will be to continue to showcase the many attractive investment opportunities in Africa, Moore notes.
“The growth and renown of the Mining Indaba is based on one core principle and that is to convene the right dealmakers and provide the most pertinent information on the investment climate in Africa, all within the targeted outcome of capitalising the African mining value chain.”
The Mining Indaba team spends months on research and receiving and analysing feedback from its partners in Africa and abroad, says Moore.
As such, the Indaba has identified highly respected experts and ‘trailblazing’ newcomers to add different perspectives on mining in Africa and the overall investment climate on the continent, he adds.
In addition to the agenda, the team continues to introduce new networking elements and opportunities for the diverse and international group of delegates who will walk through the doors of the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) between February 8 and 11.
The Mining Indaba intends to provide delegates with a “tailored“ networking and educational experience, Moore says.
An investor portal will be provided to match investment interests with mining companies, based on their primary metals, production phases and many other critical elements. “This will ensure that investors get the most value for their time at the Mining Indaba,” Moore states.
A new young leaders career skills workshop has been added to the agenda and is aimed at youth who are pursuing a career in a mining discipline and are seeking ways to advance in the industry. It is scheduled for February 11 and is open to postgraduate professionals who have graduated in either 2014 or 2015.
“This addition supports the Min-ing Indaba’s initiative in investing and cultivating the next generation of mining leaders,” Moore states.
Meanwhile, the task of preparing to welcome thousands of professionals to a global event is significant, particularly in terms of consistently providing a world-class experience, managed by an operations team based in New York and London.
In addition, there is a network of 12 service providers on the ground in South Africa to assist in coordinating the logistics of the event. For example, the team works on floor plan logistics, security, ease of on-site registration and session room audiovisuals.
Each detail is precisely executed to ensure delegates move smoothly from venue to venue, outlines Moore, who will speak at the event.