Dangerous, polluting, illegal and wrong. The conventional narrative around artisanal and small-scale mining in Africa (AGM) tends to use words such as

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2 Dangerous, polluting, illegal and wrong. The conventional narrative around artisanal and small-scale mining in Africa (AGM) tends to use words such as these. And while it is true that the sector has problems, it also has the potential to clean up its act and provide sustainable livelihoods for millions of the world's poorest people. Monsieur Drame & Monsieur Dembo both know what a difference a fresh approach can make. Drame is the President of the Association of Gold Miners in Kedougou & Mr Dembo the Vice President. They are part of a regional network that develops environmental and social standards for responsible artisanal mining, so certified miners can sell their products legally and benefits from their local GIE groupement d intérêt économique (Group of Economic Interests ) One of the big inspirations for AGM is Kedougou Gold (KG), an entrepreneurial small scale mining company working with GIE artisanal gold miners in the Kedougou Region of Senegal an area marked by high rates of poverty, social exclusion and illegal mining. The AGM alongside KG are planning to legalize about 2000/3000 miners in the miners card (>100usd) system over the next 3 years and the premium they earn helps pay for local community development projects and diversification, return into other livelihood activities. Looking to become a brand in its own right, KG will successfully merge the ancestral knowledge of local communities with scientific and technical know-how to make mercury free artisanal mining clean, green and safe. But KG & the AGM are a rare combination as Investors are not given the right tools to understand the opportunities to be had working alongside the already producing artisanal workers. Most small-scale mining operates work at the fringes, neglected by governments, in conflict with companies, and overlooked by donors who see small-scale agriculture and forestry as more worthy projects to support. Yet the sector provides jobs for almost 60,000 in this region and million people worldwide, often from the poorest and most marginalized of communities. That's 10 times more people worldwide than large-scale mining does. Smallscale miners produce about 20-25% of all gold.

3 For KG, the first step is to change minds, working alongside local GIE & the AGM to recognize small-scale mining as both highly productive and as a legitimate part of the mining sector. Promote environmentally sound gold products locally, regionally and globally through a sustainable, productive scale- able mining turnkey template. The government of SENEGAL is highly adaptable to bring small-scale mining into their economic and rural development plans. KG alongside AGM & local GIE will create incentives for small-scale miners to make their operations legal and help miners access finance, technology and secure land rights. Senegal has recently changed its Mining laws in 2014 to shake up the systems that license mining. While licenses for big mining companies typically last 30 years or more, the government has introduced laws for semi-mechanized mining alongside the artisanal miners to encourage investment in this sector While KG has found that with the AGM there is good hands-on experience and innovation on-the-ground, they ultimately face huge implementation challenges which stall progress. What is clear is that the only effective way for this little known but hugely productive sector of the mining to grow and become a formalized part of the local, Regional and Governmental plans will be working in partnership with the miners themselves. Attitudes won't change and policies won't improve on their own, what's needed first is better knowledge and understanding of the sector.kg will create opportunities to affordable ore concentrating equipment and techniques with plans to source locally manufactured equipment in its future. Encourage, support and make agreements to make available in a way that is helpful and convincing to miners, ways to increase gold yield from alternative practices compared to existing mercury-based practices and transparency in supply chains. Forward looking plans include, working alongside the Peace Corps by initiating programs to Increase the availability and the dissemination of user-friendly information to communities and GIEs regarding mercury risks and ways to reduce occupational/ environmental exposures and environmental contamination. Expand the use of mercury vapor control technologies and retorting in small-scale, gold processing, and establish chain of custody throughout amalgam processing from gold miner to end-user. By increasing cadres of trained local specialists to work in communities on a long-term basis to foster behavior change among miners, for example, regional training centers. Only then can the right institutions grow and the right investments flow, using a turn-key adaptable solution with semi-mechanized mining,improved processing and effective mercury free mining we can create multistakeholder space where committed individuals and organizations from different parts of the sector can come together to build trust, learn, innovate and find shared solutions.

4 In Conclusion The time is ripe for Investors and miners to come together to help small-scale mining realize its potential to be a highly productive force for good. The global demand for mineral resources continues to grow. Meanwhile, the UN's new Minamata Convention on Mercury, agreed in January 2013, will require signatory governments which include Senegal, to develop plans to reduce or eliminate use of the pollutant mercury from artisanal and small-scale mines, and create public awareness campaigns as part of the plans. This will create opportunities to look beyond mercury and ensure small-scale mining meets its potential to improve lives and take better care of local environments.

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