Jourdan’s wealth of experience

2011-02-27 10:00
Mpho Sibanyoni
Mineral resources specialist Dr Paul Jourdan has a wealth of experience in mining and government.

Jourdan, a 59-year-old professional in earth science and mineral economics, is also a card-carrying member of the ANC. He was in exile between 1975 and 1991.

He has worked on an industrial strategy project for the National Union of ­Mineworkers.

After 1994, he was employed as an adviser to former trade and industry minister Alec Erwin. He is still doing the same job for the current trade and industry head, Rob Davies.

Jourdan, a former deputy director-general for the department, also served as a chief executive of South Africa’s national mineral research organisation, Mintek, until 2006.

Jourdan’s most notable contribution was when he helped to make the government the custodian of mineral rights in South Africa, a norm in Western mining countries.

He has done some consultancy work for the UN, Mozambique and Ethiopia.

In 2009 he worked for a year as a ­consultant for the Liberian government on the ­concessions for its mineral assets.

During his work in Liberia, Jourdan ­supported the idea that ­government auction off its mineral rights, and firmly believed South Africa should have done the same.

He argued that this would have created thousands of jobs.