Government Sets New Standards for Uganda’s Tin Exports

Government of Uganda through the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, has approved a ew statutory instrument that sets higher purity levels for tin exports. The instrument was signed by the Minister of Energy Mrs. Ruth Nankabirwa Sentamu at the Ministry headquarters at Amber House, Kampala.

“I am happy today to sign a Statutory Instrument on the Level of Purity of Tin as a Mineral,” Dr Nankabirwa stated. She emphasised that this initiative aligns with the President of Uganda’s directive to halt the exportation of unprocessed minerals, including tin.

Under the new statutory instrument, the minimum purity level for tin exports has been raised to 99.85% from the previous 67% to 70%. Th new purity level will help to increase the value of Uganda’s tin exports ,tin mining and processing industry in Uganda.

Nankabirwa revealed that a new company Wood Cross which has set up a tin smelting plant in Mbarara will take the lead in ensuring Uganda high quality tin is exported to the rest of the world . “They have been waiting for this statutory instrument to start the tin processing process,” she said.

The minister warned against smuggling of raw unprocessed tin and said government will intensify monitoring to protect the industry and ensure the availability of raw materials for the new smelting plant. “We are going to swing into operations to make sure that this company is not denied of the raw materials,” she said.

She said that similar purity standards will be established for other minerals that include vermiculite and the 3Ts (Tin, Tantalum, and Tungsten). 

Tin, which is predominantly mined in western Uganda areas of Isingiro, Ntungamo and Mbarara, is primarily used in solder, an alloy that is essential for joining pipes and electronic circuits. It’s also used in plating, to prevent corrosion, and in various alloys, such as bronze. The 3T minerals are often grouped due to their related uses and the challenges associated with their mining and trading.

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