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Reuters reported that despite continued uncertainty about the proposed revision to the mining code in the Democratic Republic of Congo, gold and copper production in the war-stricken country rose sharply in the first quarter of 2015.

Reuters reported that despite continued uncertainty about the proposed revision to the mining code in the Democratic Republic of Congo, gold and copper production in the war-stricken country rose sharply in the first quarter of 2015.

As quoted in the market news:

Congo, which vies with Zambia to be Africa’s leading copper producer, mined 279,573 tonnes of the metal during the quarter, according to the central bank’s March statistical bulletin. That was up 13.7 percent from 245,868 tonnes over the same period in 2014.

Gold production jumped to 8,457 kilograms in the first quarter of 2015 from 4,972 kg over the same period last year, a 70 percent rise.

Large new gold mines opened by companies like Randgold Resources (NASDAQ:GOLD), AngloGold Ashanti (NYSE:AU) and Banro Corporation (TSX:BAA) in the last four years have boosted Congo’s industrial gold output from near zero in 2011 to over 20 tonnes last year. The country hopes to become one of the continent’s leading gold producers.

The central African country also boasts vast reserves of cobalt, diamonds, tin and tantalum, and the mining sector accounts for about 10 percent of its GDP. Congo’s government submitted a revision of its 2002 mining code to parliament in March against fierce industry objections. Mining companies say that tax and royalty increases in the proposed code would deter new investment in the sector.

The vice president of Congo’s chamber of mines, Simon Tuma-Waku, told Reuters on Monday that Prime Minister Augustin Matata Ponyo’s office had recalled the draft legislation from parliament last week in order to deal with it personally.

Click here to read the full Reuters report.

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