Niger's agreement with French mining group 'incomplete'

GMT 12:44 2014 Tuesday ,22 July

Arab Today, arab today Niger's agreement with French mining group 'incomplete'

Niger's agreement
Niamey - XINHUA

Niger's Speaker of Parliament Hama Amadou on Monday said the agreement signed on May 26 between the Nigerien government and French nuclear group, Areva, was "incomplete."
The french group has been mining uranium in Niger's northern region of Agadez through its subsidiaries Somair and Cominak for the last 50 years.
In the agreement, it was agreed that the two subsidiaries will appoint Nigerien nationals to positions of directors between June 2014 and June 2016.
It was further agreed that some 90 million euros (about 122 million U.S. dollars) would be injected in rehabilitation of Tahoua-Agadez-Arlit road, commonly referred to as "Uranium Road."
However, the start of exploitation of Imouraren uranium deposits which will make Niger the second biggest uranium producer in the world with 5,000 tonnes annually, was put on hold until the conditions of the international market can improve.
Due to this, Amadou accused Areva of taking positions that only favour it, noting that failure to start mining Imouraren deposits will lead to high unemployment for Nigerien youths.
But according to the Nigerien government, the agreement between the two parties was "balanced."
"I did everything, and the government equally did everything to ensure that Niger's interests are safeguarded and that is the case. Nigerien interests were defended and we agreed to initiate a new taxation regime for Areva," Nigerien President Mahamadou Issoufou said last Friday during a joint press conference in Niamey with visiting French President Francois Hollande.

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