* Gold exports earned it $1.076 bln in 2009
* Tanzania implements new mining law
DAR ES SALAAM, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Tanzania earned $4.7 billion from mining in the past five years and seeks to boost its income from the sector through state ownership of future mining projects, President Jakaya Kikwete said on Thursday.
Tanzania would continue to pursue reforms in the mining sector over the next five years of his administration, Kikwete said in an address to parliament, adding the government was determined to get a bigger share of earnings from mining.
“We will strengthen the State Mining Corporation (STAMICO) to enable it to participate in the ownership of large and medium-scale mines on behalf of the government,” he said.
Tanzania is Africa’s fourth largest gold producer, but also has reserves of uranium, nickel and coal. Gold exports alone earned it $1.076 billion in 2009, up from $932.4 million the previous year.
Kikwete said a new mining law passed by Parliament in April increased the rate of royalty paid on minerals.
“We have succeeded in reviewing the contracts of major mining companies and they have now started to pay taxes.”
African Barrick Gold ABG.L has four gold mines in Tanzania while Australia’s third largest gold miner, Resolute Mining (RSG.AX) and South Africa’s Anglogold Ashanti (ANGJ.J) also have gold operations there.
British mining company African Eagle AFE.L is raising funds for its nickel project in Tanzania.
He said Tanzania earned $4.98 billion from tourism in the past five years and would now focus its efforts on improving infrastructure and attracting investments in construction of modern hotels.
“The economy is now growing at a rate of 7.1 percent per year, although our target is to achieve a 10 percent growth,” said Kikwete. (Reporting by Fumbuka Ng’wanakilala; editing by Keiron Henderson)