Ghana - Country Commercial Guide
Mining Industry Equipment

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2022-03-24

Ghana’s mining sector pre-dates the colonial era. Historically, Ghana was known as the Gold Coast.  Ghana is Africa’s largest gold producer; it overtook South Africa in 2019 with 4.8 million ounces in output. Gold is the most commercially exploited mineral in Ghana, accounting for about 95% of the country’s mineral revenue. Other commercially exploited minerals in Ghana are manganese, bauxite, and diamonds. The country is also endowed with deposits of iron ore, limestone, columbite-tantalite, feldspar, quartz, and salt, and there are also minor deposits of ilmenite, magnetite, and rutile.  In 2018, Ghana discovered commercial quantities of lithium and hopes to attract investors to mine and develop lithium mining and processing.

Ghanaian mining production traditionally was state-owned, but starting in the 1980s, Ghana moved toward privatization and state divestiture, including by attracting foreign investment. Some of the major mining companies in Ghana are Newmont Goldcorp (American), as well as Chinese, Canadian, South African, and Australian companies.

Mineral rights are granted to private parties giving them the right to mine the minerals in the ground. However, the Government of Ghana is entitled to a 10% equity interest in the mineral operations, even it if does not make a financial contribution. The Government can increase its participation in mineral operations by agreement with the investor. 

A foreign investor currently is not required to have a local partner to participate in the mining industry as is the case with the oil and gas sector and other sectors of the economy. American companies can either engage in joint ventures or operate as wholly American companies. The small-scale mining industry is reserved for Ghanaians, however.

While the laws of Ghana permit 100% foreign ownership, there is an increasing drive towards local participation, especially in the provision of mining services. Companies seeking to invest should be cognizant that civil society and senior government officials may want them to consider corporate social responsibility initiatives such as environmental protection and the development of local infrastructure to support neighboring communities.

Performance

The mining sector plays a vital role in the Ghanaian economy, as it attracts more than half of all foreign direct investment (FDI) and generates more than one-third of all export revenues. The mining industry is the largest tax-paying sector in the country and makes a significant contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) and employment. 

Sub-sector best prospects

According to the Ghana Investment Promotion Center, emphasis on investment promotion has been a major objective of the industry, with a shift to a comprehensive vision that facilitates greater exploitation, processing and downstream activities for Ghana’s minerals. Such opportunities include:

Production

Setting up refinery facilities to serve the local industry for value-added products.
Mining and producing solar salt or caustic soda. The latter is used in the local soap and detergent industry. Chlorine by-product can also be used as water treatment chemicals and as an input into various health and sanitation chemicals.
Producing clinker for the mining industry. Demand for clinker is estimated at over one million metric tons per annum.
Exploiting the extensive deposit of granite to produce high-quality floor tiles.
Producing dimension stones for the building industry.
Engineering and Services

Providing support services, including contract drilling, assay laboratories, contract mining and geological consultancies to mining companies in the country.
Setting up manufacturing plants and machinery for the mining industry.
Developing downstream production facilities to manufacture key inputs for the mining industry. Examples include mill balls, drill bits, cyanide, and activated carbon.

Contact: U.S. Commercial Service Ghana Commercial Specialist PaaEkow Quansah at office.accra@trade.gov or +233 (0) 30 274 1329 for more information on this sector.

Resources

Ghana Investment Promotion Center

Global Resource Network