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Part B: Mineral Rights - Part B-4: ASM Licencing - 28. Artisanal Mining | 28.11. Revocation of License

Provisions on revocation of the Artisanal Mining licence describe the grounds on which the Regulating Authority can cause the early termination of the licence, as well as the process that it must follow in doing so. Forced early termination of the licence by the Regulatory Authority is called revocation, withdrawal or cancellation, depending on the jurisdiction.

28.11. Example 1:

Article [_] Revocation of artisanal mining licences.

(1) The [Regulating Authority] may revoke an artisanal mining licence if he is satisfied in respect of the licence that–

(a)the holder of the licence, including any member of a cooperative or a partnership or a shareholder of a body corporate, is not a [Country] citizen; or

(b) no mining operations have commenced within a period of one hundred and eighty calendar days from the date of registration or renewal of the licence.


Drawn from Sierra Leone’s mining law (2009), this example provides only the following two grounds on which an artisanal mining licence can be revoked by the Regulating Authority:

    1)The holder does not meet the eligibility requirement of being a citizen of the host country, or an entity wholly-owned by such citizens; or

    2)Mining operations under the licence have not commenced within half a year after the date of registration of the licence or of its renewal.

This provision describes the specific grounds for revocation of an AM licence. That licence is considered to be a mining right under Sierra Leone’s mining law and, as such, is subject to the general provisions on cancellation that apply to all mining rights.

28.11. Example 2:

Article [_]

(1) An artisanal mining permit may be revoked by the [Provincial Head of the Regulatory Authority] or by its local representative who issued the permit, after a formal notice to comply within thirty days did not result in the card holder remedying the situation, for any failure to comply with the obligations provided for in Article [_] of the present [Code][Act][Law] (on the obligations of the recipient of an artisanal mining permit)

(2) Where applicable, the person whose Artisanal Mining Permit has been revoked, shall not be eligible to obtain a new Artisanal Mining Permit for three years, unless they complete a training course in suitable artisanal mining techniques, organised or approved by the Mining Department.

(3) An artisanal mining permit being revoked gives the right to appeal as provided for in the provisions of Articles [_] and [_] of the present [Code][Act][Law] (on appeal proceedings).

(4) The Mining Regulations shall lay down detailed terms for the organisation of a training course on artisanal mining techniques.


Drawn from the DRC’s mining law (2002), this is an example of a provision for the revocation of an AM licence granted pursuant to a simple, decentralized license procedure, authorizing AM work within a designated AM zone rather than within an exclusive licence area.

The example contains several notable features. It provides due process safeguards. In this example, the decentralized authority that issued the AM licence is authorized to revoke it only after giving 30 days’ notice of a failure to comply with one or more of the obligations of AM licence holders specified in the cross-referenced articles of the mining law, in the absence of remediation or correction by the licence holder within that time period. Thus, the examples provides for notice and an opportunity to cure the defective performance and thereby avoid the revocation. Furthermore, the example provides a right to appeal the decision to revoke the AM licence to a judicial court.

The example provides that the holder of the revoked licence is disqualified from acquiring another AM licence for the next three years – unless he participates in a training session in artisanal mining techniques, to be organized as provided in the regulations. Thus, the example provides for corrective training to improve AM practices among licence holders who have failed to comply with their obligations in regard to health, safety, environmental protection and mine management.