BUSINESS: How Major Intervention Resuscitated Kilembe Mines

In 2014, order President Museveni met with Tibet Hima Mining Company officials at State House, about it Nakasero.

The company was led by its Chairman, page Mr. Weiguo Li.

The President and his guests discussed the prospective economic plans of turning around Kilembe Copper Mines to contribute to the development of the national economy.

Museveni urged partners of the Tibet Hima Mining Company to ensure quality work in the development of Kilembe mines.

A redeveloped Kilembe mines would not only increase tax revenues but also create employment opportunities for the people of Kasese – a stronghold of Uganda’s opposition forces.

It would also see related infrastructural systems in the area refurbished hence giving Kasese a new outlook.

Mr. Weiguo Li assured the President that the Company is committed to investing in the economic sector of Uganda in order to boost further the country’s development tempo.

Kilembe Mines had remained in limbo for decades until 2013 when Tibet Hima entered into a 25-year Concession Agreement with Government in order to develop the copper/cobalt industry.


Edwards Katto, Commissioner, Directorate of Geological Survey and Mines (DGSM), says implementation of Kilembe Copper Project by the Concessionaire is on course.

He says installations of copper and cobalt processing lines have been re-furbished.

The company has as well installed a 1,500 tonnes per day ball mill and accessory spiral classifier;  renovated one of the two existing thickeners;  and renovated one of the six existing crushed ore bins (tanks);

Tibet, which started mining in October 2015, has gone ahead to installed a new vacuum concentrate filtration unit.


During the 1960s and 1970s, Kilembe’s copper exports were once contributing at least 30 percent to the country’s GDP, turning around lives in Kasese.

The collapse of Kilembe mines left many struggling with poverty and deprived thousands of workers a livelihood.

Many blamed this situation on government’s failure to attract investment in the mineral sector.

However, Katto maintains the revised mineral policy serves the government’s overall objective of improving the international competitiveness of the mineral industry.

He says government’s economy has been liberalized where in this case private investors are allowed free international flow of capital and externalization of dividends and profits.

“Mining equipment is imported at zero tax. There is no expropriation of private properties which means that Government does not take away private property from its owner for public use without adequate compensation,” says Katto.

“Large projects that require huge capital investment are supported by execution of Mineral Development Agreements (MDAs) between the investor and the Government,” he added.

He further pointed out that government is reviewing both the Mineral Policy and the Mining Law that were put in place in 2001 and 2003 respectively in order to make the mineral sector become internationally competitive.

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