TANZANIA : THE State Mining Corporation (STAMICO) has in the past three years made an incredible turn around, with its revenues rising by over 4,000 per cent, from only 1.3bn/- during the year 2018/19 to a whopping 61.1bn/- last financial year.
Factors behind the extraordinary feats are, among others, going commercial, strengthening discipline in finance management and carrying out responsibilities as well as changing the mindset among both the management and staff of the corporation.
According to STAMICO Managing Director Dr Venance Mwasse, these factors have been driven by the ‘Turn Around Strategy’ which was designed in 2019 with the aim of reviving and reforming the corporation which in the past was nearly collapsing.
Dr Mwasse made the revelations yesterday in Dar es Salaam when speaking with editors and reporters from various media houses during one of a series of meetings organised by the Treasury Registrar for the parastatals to come out and inform the public about their activities and achievements.
“After deciding to run the corporation commercially, we started looking for business opportunities and investors for joint ventures in mining activities,” Dr Mwasse stated.
The change of fortunes saw the corporation start paying government dividends for the first time since its establishment in 1972. Last year, STAMICO paid 2.2bn/- in dividend, which rose to 2.5bn/- this year.
“With this trend, we are looking forward to completely doing away with dependence on government subsidies. Currently, we only depend on the government in payment of salaries, but from the next financial year we want to do everything on our own and pay the dividend,” he vowed.
Records in the Treasury Registrar indicate that in 2018/19 the STAMICO was depending on the government by 89 per cent, but currently, the dependence is only 9 per cent.
Highlighting other successes, Dr Mwasse said, the corporation has recorded good performance in the area of mine drilling, and this year it signed a contract with the Geita Gold Mine (GGM) for a major drilling project worth 55.2bn/-.
“We really succeeded in the area of drilling and we were placed at 4th position among companies with good performance in drilling when competing with several foreign companies at the GGM,” he explained.
He added: “This shows that the perception that public entities perform poorly as compared to private ones is a misconception.”
Furthermore, STAMICO has secured a licence to start dealing with the critical minerals including lithium, graphite, REE and copper, with the Managing Director hoping that the company will reap big once it starts venturing into this business.
STAMICO’s steady rise has not gone unnoticed. The corporation has bagged awards as overall winner in the year 2021 and 2022 consecutively at the Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF).
This year alone, it scooped five awards at different occasions, including the Africa Company of The Year Awards 2023 (ACOYA).
Speaking about the future plans, the STAMICO MD said, the corporation is set to increase the dividend to the government, strengthen major mining projects for coal and continue developing artisanal miners.
“We will finalise the process of establishing a bank for miners. This bank is expected to come to address challenges facing the miners regarding accessing loans,” he stated.
The STAMICO was established in 1972 and was mandated to participate in the mining activities, namely exploration, extraction and processing, on behalf of the public.
In the past, the corporation was dragging its feet and producing losses until 2015 when the government embarked on efforts to revive it.
In 2019, the corporation came up with the ‘Turn Around Strategy’ for reforms. Out of it, several projects were initiated and implemented including the Rafiki Briquettes, gold refinery in Mwanza, Buckreef Gold Mine.