After a two-year break, the Investing in African Mining Indaba is finally set to take place from 9 to 12 May 2022 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.
By Dineo PhoshokoFebruary 2020 was the last time delegates attended Mining Indaba in person, which also occurred at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC). During the event, handshaking, hugging and sitting closely together during seminars and conferences were, of course, the norm.
Impacts of Covid-19Although the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China, in December 2019 was common knowledge, global authorities had not anticipated that the virus would spread so rapidly, eventually becoming a global pandemic. Furthermore, nobody could predict the far-reaching impacts of the pandemic, where everybody had to quickly adapt to wearing masks, social distancing and sanitising hands, among others. Many businesses across various industries were negatively affected by the pandemic. The events industry was among the hardest hit industries, as many major planned global events had to be cancelled or postponed. This was unfortunately the case for Mining Indaba, when organisers announced that the event would not be taking place in February 2021 as planned. Thanks to the digital age and technology, an online version of Mining Indaba took place through Mining Indaba Virtual. Although the event was a world-class showcase, it was just not the same as the in-person experience, with all its excitement, as well as the hustle and bustle around the CTICC.
Mining Indaba ready to impressMay 2022 will see the return of Mining Indaba – Africa’s biggest mining conference. Speaking to Inside Mining, Tom Quinn, head of content: Mining Indaba, Hyve Group, says, “It’s incredibly exciting to be able to gather, once again, in Cape Town for the world’s largest mining investment event after two years of the global pandemic. There really is nothing as unique and comprehensive for the mining community in Africa and, with our recently announced acquisition of 121 Group, we are in an even stronger position to serve our thousands of delegates with bespoke meetings programmes as part of their Mining Indaba experience.” Quinn further adds that the event is uniquely positioned to offer more to delegates from across the mining value chain, along with mainstay content streams during Indaba week that include:
- Main Stage
- Ministerial Symposium
- Intergovernmental Summit
- Junior Mining Forum
- Green Metals Day
- Mining 2050
- Sustainability Day
- Young Leaders Forum
- Investment Battlefield
- General Counsel Forum.
The 2022 conference is expected to a world-class showcase with some new features. According to Quinn, delegates can expect the following:
- For the first time, a stage dedicated to the Infrastructure & Supply Chain Forum brings together vital mining supply chain companies with senior mining executives to discuss ESG-focused solutions to Africa’s expensive mining operations.
- Platforming the first-ever Innovation Battlefield – with the Development Partner Institute – where academic institutions and start-ups can showcase their latest project concepts to make mining more sustainable and decarbonised.
- Hyve’s recently announced acquisition of 121 Group means that the global event organiser is in an even stronger position than ever before to serve thousands of delegates with bespoke investor meetings programmes as part of their Mining Indaba experience.
- Allied to the Indaba’s overall meetings offering is the brand-new Hosted Meetings programme, whereby mining suppliers will be able to meet – on a bespoke, one-to-one basis – with mining and exploration companies to build valuable connections and partnerships.
Hosting a safe and successful eventThere are obviously risks and concerns around hosting an event of this magnitude in the middle of a pandemic. As such, strict measures will be needed to ensure the safety of everyone attending Mining Indaba. “At Hyve, it is something we are used to, having organised many large-scale events across the world over the last two years in a Covid-safe environment. We launched our Covid-19 Taskforce early in 2020 and have been working with major venues, industry associations, health and safety experts, local authorities, and other event organisers to manage the situation effectively ever since,” says Simon Ford, portfolio director: Mining Indaba, Hyve Group. He stressed that the health, safety and security of exhibitors, visitors and colleagues remains is a number one priority. “We will put all of this expertise into our planning for Mining Indaba in May.” In terms of measures in place for the upcoming event, Ford explains that all procedures will be in accordance with the federal and local regulations. “This will include cleaning and personal hygiene, social distancing, and the cleaning of event and venue facilities.” Different variants of the virus have been identified in South Africa and abroad. The discoveries were met with international travel bans. With Mining Indaba being a global event, travel bans could potentially have a negative impact on the conference. Ford maintains that organisers will continue to monitor the travel situation for business tourists coming into South Africa and how it impacts people returning to their home countries. “At the moment, we are encouraged to see that restrictions appear to be easing and confidence is starting to return to international travel. Our commitment has always been to deliver a live, in-person event in South Africa and we are highly confident we can deliver this in May,” he says. The pandemic also caused a lot of panic and fear globally, to an extent where some people became reluctant to attend events in person. Ford is, however, confident that this will not be the case for the Indaba. “From everything we have seen – including client conversations, firm commitments to attend the event, and confidence returning to international travel and attending large-scale events – we see no indication that people will be discouraged from attending Mining Indaba in May,” he says. There is no doubt that this year’s Mining Indaba will be slightly different, considering that it is taking place during a pandemic. However, come 9 May 2022, the CTICC will be abuzz with all eyes on the Main Stage for the official Mining Indaba opening.
2020 Mining Indaba stats
- Over 6 500 delegates
- 39 ministers
- 1 president
- 1 prime minister
- 950+ mining executives
- 830+ investors