Rössing Uranium Limited
Rössing Uranium – 46 Years of Working for Namibia
Rössing Uranium, which is majority-owned by China National Uranium Corporation Limited (CNUC), is one of Namibia’s currently two uranium producing mines. It is the world’s longest running open pit uranium mine, celebrated 45 years of working for Namibia in 2021, and contributing to the social and economic prosperity of the country.
In 2021, the mine again had an excellent year, both in term sof safety and production. On the safety front, the company recorded an All Injury Frequency Rate (AIFR) of 0.29, beating the record of 0.31 set in 2020, which was the best performance the mine has recorded since commencing operations in 1976. The company exceeded budgeted production targets by a significant margin, as the 2 882 tonnes of U3O8 produced during 2021 represent a 16% increase compared to 2020. Rössing Uranium currently sells a portion of it’s product into an existing long-term contract portfolio, and the remaining available production is sold to the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) Group. In 2021, 76% sales volume was delivered to Asia, of which 90% has been sold to the majority shareholder CNUC/CNNC. The remaining 24% sales volume was delivered under the long-term contract portfolio to North America (16%) and Europe, Middle East and Africa (8%).
Being an employer of choice, Rössing Uranium provides long-term and rewarding employment. The current workforce of some to 1 500 employees consists of 99.3% Namibians. Through employment creation the mine makes significant contributions to society and the economy, and strives to keep the workforce engaged through implementing initiatives that benefit both the company and its employees. Some of these initiatives focus on learning and development (granting of bursaries to support students in various fields; apprenticeship training including bursaries and job attachments for on-the-job learning).
As a major employer and purchaser of goods and services, Rössing Uranium makes a significant annual contribution to economic development in the Erongo Region in particular and to Namibia at large. The mine’s annual procurement spend has a significant “multiplier effect” – the phenomenon where spending by one company creates income for further spending by others. In 2021, local procurement of goods and services for the operations amounted to N$ 1.815 billion. Other contributions include Government revenue through PAYE, royalties, tax and dividends, in addition to salaries paid to our employees.
Though the uranium industry faced difficult times during the pandemic, Rössing is particularly proud that employees have shown resilience, commitment and creativity in overcoming the challenges. Rössing is therefore looking forward to keep working for Namibia for a long time to come.
The Rössing Foundation, established in 1978, implements and facilitates programmes and projects that express corporate social responsibility towards Namibian communities. It undertakes a range of activities across a spectrum of community development, vocational education and training. Well-developed programmes and projects of the Rössing Foundation focus on education, enterprise development (e.g. Ûiba-Ôas Crystal Market near Usakos) and the economic transformation of Arandis (e.g. Dreamland agribusiness), thus supporting the Namibian government’s goals for economic advancement, social progression and infrastructure development. These activities are concentrated in the Erongo Region, but they also fan out to the Omaheke, Hardap, Ohangwena, Oshana, Omusati and Zambezi regions.
The Rössing Foundation has been working in partnership with the Government of Namibia since 1990. Activities include social accountability and school governance projects (e.g. school board training and exchange-exposure programmes between schools to share and learn from each other); strengthening the capacity of teachers and learners, leadership and management programmes and resource sharing and exchanging expertise. To address educational challenges facing Namibia, the Rössing Foundation assists the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture by availing opportunities to teachers and learners to acquire subject content knowledge to improve their competencies in English, Mathematics and the Sciences. To this effect the Rössing Foundation built and operates three state-of-the-art English, Mathematics and Science Centres in Arandis, Swakopmund and Ondangwa. The mobile education centre launched in 2015 is a first for Namibia and is a replica of the successful Mathematics & Science centres.