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Botswana

Legislation

  • Mines and Minerals Act 1999
  • Environmental Assessment Act 2010
  • Environmental Assessment Regulations 2012

Regulatory Risk Rating

Substantial
Regulatory Risk

Regulatory Corruption Risk

Very High
Regulatory Corruption Risk

Corruption Exposure Risk

Low
Corruption Exposure Risk
Regulatory Risk Rating Factors Risk Level
First Come / First Serve Subscribe
Application Critiera Subscribe
Duration Subscribe
Right to Renew Subscribe
Competing Licences Subscribe
Mineral Coverage Subscribe
Right to Mine Subscribe
Criteria for Mining Rights Subscribe
Tenure Subscribe
Surface Rights Subscribe
Government Take Subscribe
Transfer Rights Subscribe
Change of Control Subscribe
EIA Process Subscribe
Power to Revoke Subscribe
Age of Legislation Subscribe
Other Factors Subscribe

For decades, Botswana’s mining sector has been focused on diamond mining and, as a result, the legislative framework allows the government considerable discretion to negotiate terms with any party which makes a new discovery of diamonds in the country. This amounts to something of a roll of the dice. Successful negotiations and commercially rewarding arrangements have certainly proved possible, and agreements of this nature may be useful in mitigating risk as regards other areas of the legal framework. However, the outcome of negotiations cannot be assured and failure to reach an agreement will result in the loss of a discovery. For those pursuing opportunities in other minerals, the risk profile is broadly similar – given the ‘critical risk’ aspects of the law arise mainly in relation to security of tenure and the obtainment of mining rights. However, given the absence of need (or opportunity) to negotiate a separate agreement, the terms of development, including fiscal requirements, are at least known in advance of investment.

Contents

Legislation

  • Mines and Minerals Act 1999
  • Environmental Assessment Act 2010
  • Environmental Assessment Regulations 2012

Regulatory Risk Rating

Substantial
Regulatory Risk

Regulatory Corruption Risk

Very High
Regulatory Corruption Risk

Corruption Exposure Risk

Low
Corruption Exposure Risk

Overview

Botswana’s economy has thrived since the country gained independence in 1966 and it is now recognised as one of the most stable countries on the African continent, both economically and politically. Mining is a major contributor to Botswana’s GDP – mainly due to the success of the country’s diamond sector. Botswana is one of the world’s largest diamond producers (Russia being the other) and the country has some of the richest diamond mines by value in the world. The long running relationship with De Beers has been particularly successful for both parties. Debswana, an equal joint venture between Botswana and De Beers, was established in 1969 and is itself a world leading diamond producer by value and volume, operating four mines in the country. However, Botswana’s reliance on the diamond sector is not without issues. The World Bank has noted problems in the country in regard to slow economic growth, inequality and limited job creation and there are seen to be limited linkages between mining and the rest of the economy. Diamond market volatility can also have significant economic impacts. To offset these issues, and as part of the country’s Vision 2036, Botswana is focusing on increasing infrastructure investment, as well as on the growth of non-diamond mining opportunities, with plans to develop the country’s significant copper, nickel and coal mineral resources.

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