World Bank and Pact launch first ‘state of the sector’ report for artisanal and small-scale mining

  • Over 40 million people globally work in artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM)
  • 10 million people living in 40 countries in sub-Saharan Africa are directly engaged in ASM
  • Accurate, reliable data on artisanal and small-scale mining is an essential first step to understanding the sector, recognizing miners and formalizing their work

PARIS, FRANCE | April 24, 2019 –At the OECD Forum, The World Bank and Pact will launch the 2019 State of the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining Sector, a first-of-its-kind report exploring the origins and impact of the ‘global data gap’ on artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM), and outlining how the gap can be narrowed to formalize this global sector. Drawing from online database Delve, the report finds that at least 40 million people work in ASM globally. ASM is the most important rural non-farm activity in the developing world, but for too long the sector has remained in the shadows. Complete, accurate and reliable data is an essential first step to better understanding the sector: recognizing the importance of miners and formalizing their work.

The 2019 State of the ASM Sector report identifies ways to improve data collection methodologies and presents a shortlist of ‘key data needs’ for the sector. The report finds there is great potential to significantly reduce the global data gap, which will enable ASM to deliver on its potential and help fulfill the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The report features in-depth analysis of the data gaps and importance of ASM through regional and country case studies, including Ghana, Guyana, India, Mongolia, Morocco and Peru.

“Artisanal and small-scale mining is a vital livelihood for some 40 million people around the world, mostly in developing countries. It’s time to shine a light on this vital sector so we can accelerate investments in people and communities for greater equity and sustainable economic growth” said Riccardo Puliti, Senior Director and Head of the Energy and Extractives Global Practice at the World Bank. “This report is one of the first steps towards building a world where the contributions from miners to the global economy is fully recognized.”

In 2017, The World Bank and Pact announced a partnership to create Delve, a first-of-its-kind global online platform for ASM data. Delve is a crowdsourcing database built on the data contributions from sector stakeholders. A beta version of the platform is available online at www.delvedatabase.org, with the full Version 1.0 to launch later this year. Envisioned as an annual publication, the inaugural ‘state of the sector’ report draws on the data from Delve to provide up-to-date analyses of the sector, in line with emerging global trends and key issues.

“The ASM sector has an urgent need for, and right to, accurate data that truly represents the sector’s potential as well as its challenges. This is essential to avoid repetition of errors, ignorance of gaps, duplication of effort and underselling the sector’s value to international supply chains,” said Karen Hayes, Vice President of Pact’s Mines to Markets initiative. “Bridging the data gap is the first step in removing the veil of invisibility from the millions of men and women miners who are integral to our global economy,” said Hayes.

Read the full report