Egyptian Mineral Resources Authority (EMRA) Chairman Khaled El Sheshtawy signed a cooperation protocol with Ali Abu Sunna, head of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA), to organize the procedures for obtaining the environmental approvals for mining and research activities, according to a ministerial statement.

Witnessed by the Minister of Petroleum & Mineral Resources Tarek El Molla and Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad, the signing of the protocol comes as the government seeks to implement environmentally sustainable practices, which in turn aligns with the sustainable development trend.

The terms of protocol indicate that the EMRA has to coordinate and take initial approval from the EEAA before contracting or offering any bid for gold mine exploration. If the exploration activities may cause environmental damage, the authority should not complete the mining activities in these sites and abide by the standards and conditions dictated by the EEAA.

Furthermore, the EEAA would be responsible for issuing environmental approvals within a maximum of 30 days for incoming requests that are in line with its standards. In addition, the agency would follow up on sites to ensure the implementation of its environmental requirements.

On this occasion, El Molla stressed the importance of the current coordination and cooperation between the two ministries in the environmental aspect of mining projects as well as the optimal exploitation of mineral resources.