The yearly Mining Indaba – the word means “to confer” in Zulu – brings together financiers and mining bosses who pay up to 20,000 South African rand (Dh5,510) for an entry tag for the week-long event held in Cape Town, where they huddle in non-stop meetings talking money and geology.
For the past five years the event has been a gloomy affair. The swift end of the commodities supercycle left the industry in survival mode, struggling with debt and flat commodity prices. This year though the tone was distinctly light during the event that wrapped last Thursday amid hope that a price rally that began last year will last.
During the previous commodity run it was central and southern Africa that benefited the most, but this time countries such as Nigeria, Niger, Senegal, Mauritania, Ethiopia and others that form part of Islamic Africa are hoping to join in.