The bill was presented to Parliament by the Economic Committee of the National Council after consultation with the SADR executive branch.
Acording to a press release sent out by the Saharaw government 29. May 2014, the code was drafted to international standards by legal firms with extensive experience in advising Governments on mining law. The code is said to be based on regional best practice with similarities to the recently updated Mining Codes in neighboring countries.
"The Mining Code demonstrates the Saharawi Government’s commitment to responsible stewardship of the SADR’s mineral resources and the management of their development for the benefit of the Saharawi people in accordance with both national and international law. The Code provides for protection of the environment whilst providing an attractive and stable fiscal and legislative framework in which international mining companies may invest and operate.", the press releases states.
Mr. Emhamed Khadad, Member of the Polisario leadership and advisor to the SADR President, welcomed the adoption of the Code and said, “Initial exploration results have been very encouraging with confirmation of both iron ore and gold and we believe that the adoption of a clear and competitive Mining Code provides the framework for commercial investment. Prudent development of the natural resources of the SADR, including those currently being illegally exploited by Morocco, will make a significant economic contribution to the Saharawi State”.
Mr. Khadad added that “The adoption of the Code demonstrates the Saharawi Government’s responsible management of natural resources for the benefit of the Saharawi people, contributing to the development of the SADR and the future stability of the whole Maghreb region”.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
It's not easy keeping up with all the different legal proceedings relating to Western Sahara. For the sake of clarity, here's an overview of the three different cases at the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Leading activists from Western Sahara are condemned to sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment in connection to a mass protest in 2010 denouncing the Saharawi people’s social and economic marginalization in their occupied land; the Gdeim Izik protest camp.
At COP22, beware of what you read about Morocco’s renewable energy efforts. An increasing part of the projects take place in the occupied territory of Western Sahara and is used for mineral plunder, new WSRW report documents.