http://af.reuters. com/article/ investingNews/ idAFJOE58S0KN200 90929
Venezuela says 7 African states to join mining firm
Tue Sep 29, 2009
CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela said on Tuesday that seven African nations would join it in forming a cross-continental mining corporation intended to give poor nations greater control of developing their resources.
Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez proposed the "multi-state" corporation at a summit of South American and African (ASA) nations at the weekend. State media said Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Angola and Tanzania had signed letters of intent to create the "ASA Mining Corporation" with an initial focus on iron. "This alliance ... foresees the forming of joint ventures for exploration, geological prospecting, production and installation of small plants to process iron into steel," Venezuela's official news agency ABN said.
Venezuela's Mining Minister Rodolfo Sanz said the South American steel-producing nation would send technical teams within 30 days to Mauritania and Tanzania. "We are going to help those countries calculate their reserves and their geological refuges so they know what they really have under the earth," he said. The goal is "to prevent industrial countries from continuing to suck the undersoil of those nations," said Sanz, whose socialist government pursues an aggressively "anti-imperialist" line in international affairs.
The weekend summit was dominated by grand proposals for South America-Africa cooperation, and calls for poor nations to unite against the economic dominance of the West. Analysts say, however, that the Venezuelan government has a track record of failing to carry through some of the international initiatives that it enthusiastically announces across many sectors.