An Abduction in Niger: Canada, the UN and Canadian Mining

“Canadian diplomatic missions in Africa spend much of their time making sure that mining companies and host governments are brought together and the companies are much praised by Canadian officials.”

This diplomacy has enabled Canadian corporations, particularly mining companies, to thrive. Today, Africa is home to some 600 Canadian mining concessions worth more than $12 billion. Over the past two decades, there has been a huge increase in Canadian mining investments across the continent. Up from about a quarter billion dollars in 1989, Canadian mining assets in Africa were (before the recent commodities crash) projected to top $20 billion by 2010. Every Canadian should be concerned about this investment and ask what is being done in our name.

While a few independent-minded reporters have written about Canadian mines that have spurred war in the Congo, killings in Tanzania and environmental devastation from Kenya to Ghana, most of the mainstream media prefers to focus on how the Chinese are buying up Africa.

Wouldn’t Canadians be better served if the media told us about companies based in our country buying up Africa, the politicians helping them do it and the effects on ordinary Africans?  read more

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