In the light of a diagnostic of the mining sector pointing its strengths and weaknesses and the opportunities and threats it faces, Morocco has a National mining sector Development Strategy excluding phosphates. This strategy, arrested in consultation with the mining profession, based on ambitious targets for 2025 aimed to tripling of industry turnover to over 15 Billion Dirham, multiplying by 10 the volume of investment in exploration and mining research at close to 4 billion dirhams and the doubling of jobs generated by the sector to more than 30 000 direct jobs. To make the mining sector more attractive, several projects are currently open. This is especially of:

  • Modernize our mining regulations;
  • Increase the pace of geological mapping;
  • Restructure artisanal mining.

In terms of the legislative and regulatory framework, it should be noted that the new Law No. 33-13 relating to mines that adopted last July aimed to modernizing the old law dating back to the 50s of the last century (Dahir of April 16, 1951), and its adaptation to the evolution of the mining sector at world level and in order to improve the contribution of this sector in our country through the development of exploration and mining research to discover new deposits while ensuring a sustainable development of the national mining industry.

Regarding geological mapping, the Department of Energy and Mining currently has a central Directorate dealing Geology (National Geological Survey). This is justified by the fact that Morocco aspires to boost the mining, oil and gas exploration and should logically have an efficient structure able to catch up geological mapping program that does not exceed today the following coverage:

  • 36% in geological maps;
  • 42% in Geophysical;
  • 8% in geochemical maps

A roadmap is being set up, declining the 2015-2025 vision into concrete and priority mapping projects. The objective is to accelerate the pace of cartographic production to catch up cumulative delay over the years for geological mapping, essential tool for knowledge mining potentialities Moroccan soil and subsoil and making available to investors in an appropriate and reliable geological infrastructure for the entire national territory.

Concerning artisanal mining, it should be noted that the Mining Region of Tafilalet and Figuig was always been considered as a mining vocation region. Artisanal mining, operated in this region, is governing by the Dahir of 01/12/1960 that has created in parallel the Central of collection and Development of the mining region of Tafilalet and Figuig (CADETAF), public institution with legal personality and financial autonomy.

Within the meaning of this Dahir, the CADETAF is responsible for the collection, transportation and marketing of lead ores, zinc and barite extracted from the mining region of Tafilalet and Figuig. Artisans are required to deliver their entire production to the CADETAF that holds the monopoly purchase of ores.

It is now recognized that artisanal mining cannot be developed because the mineralization becoming deeper need of means and methods of advanced development greatly exceeding the capability of artisans.

It has therefore become imperative to restructure artisanal mining, which will focus on the overhaul of the Dahir of 1 December 1960 establishing the mining region of Tafilalet and Figuig while also lifting the restrictions for access of investors private and safeguarding the rights of artisanal miners.

This restructuring will be effected encouraging openness to private initiative and providing social support artisanal miners. The intervention of private operators may be done with partnership arrangements with artisanal miners based on a system of compensation with a fixed fee or "no door" and royalties in case of discovery of a commercial deposit.

As part of the implementation of this restructuring, we have organized information and sensitization meetings with artisanal miners in the presence of local authorities, elected representatives of the region and mining operators concerned to share our vision and the roadmap.

It should be noted that this restructuring plan is being finalized, aims to give an attractiveness to mining activity in this region that extends over an area of 60 000 km2 and contains promising mining potential currently exploited by traditional methods under Dahir of 1 December 1960 establishing the mining region of Tafilalet and Figuig. The objective is to ensure the integration of mining activity in the region in the development process and dynamism that knows the national mining sector.

This restructuring that will generate more investment opportunities suppose the following prerequisites:

  • The revision of the regulation governing mining in this region of Tafilalet and Figuig without making a break with the Dahir of 1960 establishing it while ensuring the safeguarding of the rights of artisans. A draft law amending and supplementing the Dahir of 1st December 1960 is currently subject to the approval pathway;
  • Awareness and implication of artisans in this restructuring process;
  • Social support artisans.