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The view from below: ‘lock in’ and local procurement in the African gold mining sector

Hanlin, R   Hanlin, C.

Resources Policy   37 (4) 468–474

December 2012   (Date deposited May 2012)

Through linkage creation, commodity extraction has the capacity to support local industrial production and capabilities building. Drawing on the experience of supplying inputs into the East African gold mining industry, this paper examines the constraints experienced by local suppliers arising from the purchasing procedures of large mining corporations and specialist construction companies contracted to construct these mines. Lead firms become locked-in to particular ways of working which minimise the opportunities that local suppliers have in providing products and services. After reviewing the situation for local mining suppliers in East Africa, the paper examines ways in which lead firms, the suppliers themselves and others (governments and industry associations) can better support local supplier involvement.