A page is turned at one of the major providers of the mining industry in the DRC, the explosives supplier AEL. Francis Kasongo and Kazadi Kaninda, respectively the former and the new CEO, took over. Interview.

Mining & Business: Mr. KAZADI KANINDA, could you explain your background?

Kazadi K.: I am Congolese. Father of three children: two girls and a boy. I am married to Dr. Sandra. I was born in Lubumbashi. I started my studies at the Lycée français Blaise Pascal in Lubumbashi and then continued them at the Maadini Institute in Lubumbashi before entering the UNILU at the Polytechnic Faculty where I chose the mining sector. In 2004, I obtained my degree as a Civil Engineer of Mines. I joined AEL in February 2005where I worked until  today, moving up the ladder from the position of Engineer to the position of

Managing Director of Africa CEMAC.

MB: So you are replacing Francis Kasongo. What are your prospects for the next 3 years?

KK: On July 22nd of this year, we were all officially informed about the sharing of ‘AEL Africa’. Francis goes to the side of Francophone West Africa and I take his place.

He brought the company to where it is today. That is 160 employees. 95% are Congolese. We have a cold emulsion plant in Kansuki, which was the first of its kind on Congolese territory when it started production in 2013. And so we will have the mission to extend this expertise in the country and the rest of the subregion for the coming years.

MB: What are the main products and major challenges for AEL in the future?

KK: AEL Mining Services offers mining companies a mining service. The main product we make available to mining companies and quarries is a ‘mining service’ for mining operations and products to be used.

So it is not only products that we sell, but a whole SERVICE.

We assist mining companies in optimizing their fragmentation operations with our teams, our equipment and finally our various products. The main objective is therefore to guide miners according to their needs, as each has different needs depending on its operations.

MB: And in terms of market share, what is AEL in the DRC?

KK: In DR Congo AEL represents just over 75% of the explosives market in the mining industry.

MB: Can you explain what has changed with the arrival ofAfridex?

KK: Afridex has been the state entity that manages us since May 2017. We are still in a process of clarifying at the practical level the interactions between industry and Afridex. Currently, relations between AEL and Afridex are well established. Otherwise we could not operate in the country!

I am confident for the future. Our explosive products industry will grow and develop even better as the management of its environment becomes clearer.


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