sharing in governance of extractive industries

ASM18: Nominations for sponsored and self-sponsored delegates now open!

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ASM18: Voices of ASM, visions of the future

The International Conference on Artisanal and Small-scale Mining & Quarrying will to foster a global dialogue about the development opportunities and challenges of ASM. It will be a space for the voices of ASM to share visions of the future. A wide spectrum of commodities will be discussed ranging from the well-known, such as precious metals and precious stones, to those that have yet to receive due attention, such as Development Minerals, like aggregate and clay.  

ASM18 is an initiative of the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme, organised by the African Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, European Union, United Nations Development Programme and Government of Zambia with the support of the World Bank, African Union, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development, and German Cooperation. A range of specialised mining institutions and Regional Economic Communities of Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific will provide technical support.

Up to 400 participants are expected to attend ASM18, representing:  

  • Artisanal and small-scale miners; quarry workers; mineral processors and users; traders; equipment manufacturers; end-product producers and other private sector actors involved in the minerals supply chain.
  • Representatives of mining and quarry associations, including women’s mining associations.
  • Representatives of government ministries, agencies and geological surveys with the responsibility for oversight, regulation, monitoring, technical support and promotion of the sector.
  • Academics and researchers.
  • Civil society and non-government organisations.
  • Multi-lateral and bilateral development actors, including inter-governmental organisations.

ASM18 will be held at the AVANI Victoria Falls Resort in Livingstone, Zambia. The natural beauty of the Mosi-oa-Tunya (Victoria Falls), located adjacent to the conference venue will provide a wonderful setting for the deliberations and a key drawcard for participation in this important international event. 


Event Information


Delegates to ASM18 will be selected to ensure a wide stakeholder, geographic and gender representation and to maximise the number of artisanal and small-scale miners in attendance. 

Sponsored Delegates

ASM18 will support three-hundred (300) fully sponsored delegates to attend the event. These delegates will be independently selected by the relevant conference partners who are responsible for the sponsorship. 

The ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme will select and sponsor more than 150 delegates from 41 countries of Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific to attend ASM18. The delegates will represent government, civil society, the academy, and artisanal and small-scale miners (and their representatives) working directly in the mining and quarrying of Development Minerals. These delegates will be chosen through a request for application process and will attend pre-conference Regional Training Workshop on Enterprise Skills, Market Analysis, Investment Promotion and Value Addition of Development Minerals (6-10 September) in addition to ASM18 (11-13 September).

The application process for delegates sponsored by the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme can be found here: (English; French; Spanish; Portuguese). Applications close: June 15

The World Bank will select and sponsor international delegates representing World Bank Country programmes on artisanal and small scale mining. The International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), with the support of German Cooperation, will select and sponsor delegates representing the ICGLR member states. The African Union will select and sponsor delegates from African Union Member States, as well as representatives of the Association of Chamber of Mines and other Mining Associations of Africa. The OECD will select and sponsor delegates representing artisanal miners, traders and civil society representatives from Africa and Latin America. The Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development will select and sponsor delegates representing female artisanal and small-scale miners. 

Self-Sponsored Delegates

One-hundred (100) self-sponsored delegates will be invited to attend ASM18.  

The self-sponsored delegates will be invited following a nomination process. Nominations will be considered by a multi-stakeholder committee of the ASM18 conference partners. The selection process will consider gender, stakeholder, and geographic representation. 

People wishing to nominate as a self-sponsored delegate should do so using the following form.

The selected self-sponsored delegates will receive an invitation to ASM18 and will be responsible for their own costs to attend (including transportation, accommodation and registration). The invitation will include details on conference logistics and registration. 

The invited self-sponsored delegates will represent specialist mining institutions, civil society organisations, academics, consultants, multi-lateral and bilateral development institutions, mining associations and private sector companies, as well as downstream users of mineral products.

Conference Program

The conference program will consist of a mix of plenary sessions, consisting of Davos-style panels, and parallel sessions consisting of workshops, dialogues, academic presentations and practical demonstrations. The programme will also include cultural events. The themes of the conference are:

  • Formalisation of ASM, especially practical experiences
  • Policy reform, regulatory frameworks and the business enabling environment
  • Strengthening value chains, value addition, and market access
  • Inclusive finance and ASM enterprises (SMEs)
  • Geological-data and technical knowledge to support the sector
  • Digital technologies and innovation
  • Local economic development and livelihood approaches
  • Responsible mineral supply chains, minerals certification and standards
  • ASM in the supply of construction materials for infrastructure, cobblestones for rural road-building and minerals for green industrialisation
  • Mercury and the Minimata convention
  • Biodiversity, rehabilitation, sedimentation and environmental management 
  • Conflict financing and illicit financial flows within mineral supply chains
  • Occupational and community health and safety
  • Gender and youth
  • Human rights
  • Child labour
  • Migration, ASM and the development nexus
  • ASM data and statistics
  • Quarry management and productivity
  • ASM’s interface with large-scale mining and agriculture
  • Quarried material and disaster reconstruction


As an international event the conference will cater for multiple languages. Simultaneous interpretation will be available in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese (for plenary sessions).

Market-Place/Trade-Fair, Exhibition Booths, and Technology Demonstrations

ASM18 will provide opportunities for knowledge exchange between miners, technology demonstrations and practical workshops. An opportunity will also be made available for miners, gem cutters, ceramicists and traders to sell their products to conference participants in a shaded outdoor market setting. Please contact asm.conference@undp.org to express interest in exhibiting during the event.

Conference Declaration 

An important outcome of ASM18 will be a declaration on artisanal and small-scale mining and quarrying, titled the ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya Declaration’, the traditional name of Victoria Falls, located adjacent to the conference venue. The declaration will be informed by pre-conference consultations to solicit inputs from a wide-array of stakeholders to ensure that the development of the declaration is inclusive.

Event Sponsorship

ASM18 is an initiative of the ACP-EU Development Minerals Programme, organised by the African Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, European Union, United Nations Development Programme, and The Government of Zambia, with the support of The World Bank, The African Union, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, The Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development, and German Cooperation.

Organisations wishing to sponsor the conference dinner, welcome reception, simultaneous interpretation or other conference components are encouraged to send an expression of interest to asm.conference@undp.org.

High-level Dignitaries

Please inform the conference organisers (asm.conference@undp.org) as soon as possible if your organisation will be supporting any high-level dignitaries to attend the event.


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