Development of National Action Plan for Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining Guinea and Niger

Project General Information


NAP Guinea & Niger

Harmful substances and hazardous waste

Persistent Organic Pollutants


EA - Enabling Activities

Targeted Capacity Building

Reduce and eliminate production, use and releases of POPs

Integrating sound chemicals management in GEF projects

To protect human health and the environment from the risks posed by the emissions and releases to the environment of mercury from artisanal and small-scale gold mining and processing in Guinea and Niger by developing NAPs in compliance with Annex C of the Minamata Convention.


The goal of the project is to contribute to the implementation of the Minamata Convention through the reduction of the risks posed by the unsound use, management and releases of mercury in the ASGM sectors.  This goal contributes to the GEF focal area strategy 1 of the chemicals waste area which is “Develop the enabling conditions, tools and environment to manage harmful chemicals and wastes ».


The project objective is to protect human health and the environment from the risks posed by the emissions and releases to the environment of mercury from artisanal and small-scale gold mining and processing in Guinea and Niger by developing NAPs in compliance with Annex C of the Minamata Convention. This includes planning for a variety of policy and market based tools to assist in supporting and developing the ASGM sector into a viable and sustainable economic activity, which is recognized by the Minamata Convention as an important component of NAPs for ASGM.


The project framework follows the guidance document on the development of a national strategic plan developed by the UNEP Global Mercury Partnership[1] and revised on the basis of experience in its usage. The guidance has been developed with the intention of addressing ASGM in a holistic manner and includes a review of legal, educational, economic, regulatory and enforcement frameworks, and provides guidance on developing budgets and workplans and identifying potential sources of funding and partners. The NAP guidance will be submitted to the first Conference of the Parties for consideration and possible adoption.  


The project was developed in consultation with the focal points in Guinea and Niger and UNEP ROA.



Expedited Enabling Activity(EA)



Guinea, Niger


GEF Trust Fund

Stage Grant to UNEP Grant to other IA Co-Financing UNEP Fee Other IA Fee

Kevin Helps


The Mercury Convention was adopted in January 2013 and will come into force once the required number of countries ratifies the Convention. The Minamata Convention on Mercury identifies and describes in its Article 13 the financial mechanism to support Parties from developing countries and countries with economies in transition to implement the Convention.  It identifies two entities that will function as the Financial Mechanism: a) the Global Environment Facility Trust Fund; and b) A specific international Programme to support capacity-building and technical assistance. As such, the GEF Assembly, at its fifth meeting, held in May 2014, agreed to an allocation in its sixth replenishment of $141 million for work under the Convention, out of which $30 million to support enabling activities and promote their integration into national budgets and planning processes, national and sector policies and actions and global monitoring.


The revised GEF initial guidelines for enabling activities for the Minamata Convention on Mercury circulated to the GEF Council members in January 2014 presented in its section 2 the guidelines for the preparation of Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining (ASGM) National Action Plans (NAPs) required under article 7. These guidelines were revised by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee 6 (INC 6) consistent with the resolution adopted by the Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Minamata Convention on Mercury. The draft guidance was introduced to the INC 7 as an annex of the document UNEP(DTIE)/Hg/INC.7/17. It was agreed that the guidance in its current form would be used to assist countries in the preparation of their action plans in the period between the current session and the first meeting of the Conference of Parties. This project follows the guidelines introduced in the INC 7 and will seek for comments from Governments to improve the guidance with a view to presenting a revised version of it for consideration and possible adoption by the Conference of the Parties at its first meeting.


The project also contributes to the achievement of the expected accomplishment A under the UNEP biennial Programme of Work (PoW) 2016-2017 “countries increasingly have the necessary institutional capacity and policy instruments to manage chemicals and waste soundly, including the implementation of related provisions in the multilateral environmental agreements” . More precisely, the project contributes to the PoW output 2 “secretariat support provided to the intergovernmental negotiating committee to prepare a global legally binding instrument on mercury (the Minamata Convention on Mercury) during the interim period, prior to its entry into force”. Through this project UNEP will provide national stakeholders with the policy and technical instruments needed to develop the National Action Plan and will strengthen the national institutional capacity to its early implementation. It will also apply and comment the NAP guidance as required by the INC 7. The outcomes of this project are also aligned with the objectives of the proposed PoW and budget for the biennium 2018-2019 approved by UNEA in 2016, expected accomplishment A, policies and legal, institutional and fiscal strategies and mechanisms for sound chemicals management developed or implemented in countries within the framework of relevant multilateral environmental agreements and the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM).  The project will contribute to the indicator of achievement by increasing the number of countries that have used UNEP guidance in developing an Action Plan that promotes sound mercury management and implement the Minamata Convention.


Guinea and Niger will benefit from new and updated information about the use of mercury and past policy approaches that have been successes and failures in formalizing and improving the environmental performance of the ASGM sector in each country, and from increased capacity in managing the risks of mercury emitted and released from such activity. The sharing of experiences and lessons learned throughout the project with other countries working on their NAPs is also expected to be an important contribution to other similar countries and foster cooperation for future implementation of the NAPs. Guinea signed the Convention on 25 November 2013 and ratified it on 21 October 2014, Niger signed the Convention on 10 October 2013. Both countries have declared the use of mercury in ASGM as more than insignificant.



Executing Agency Category

Partner Category

Name Category Period

Low Risk


Kevin Helps


Fiscal Year Project activities and objectives met

Project outcome: Guinea and Niger have developed and submitted NAPs in compliance with Annex C of the Minamata Convention to guide their future action in reducing mercury emissions and releases from, artisanal and small-scale gold mining and processing.

Project objective: To protect human health and the environment from the risks posed by the emissions and releases to the environment of mercury from artisanal and small-scale gold mining and processing in Guinea and Niger by developing NAPs in compliance with Annex C of the Minamata Convention.

Project Component

Project Outputs

(in $)

GEF Project


Confirmed Co-financing[1]

1.   Global Technical Support for NAP development

1.1      Training and guidance provided to relevant national stakeholders in Guinea and Niger to develop and implement a NAP as per Annex C of the Minamata Convention

1.2      Draft NAP developed as per Annex C of the Minamata Convention



2.   Endorsement and submission of the National Action Plans to the Minamata Secretariat

2.1       Technical support provided to participating countries to facilitate the NAP endorsement and submission to the Minamata Secretariat.





Monitoring and Evaluation






Project Management Cost[2]



Total Project Cost




[1] Co-financing for enabling activity is encouraged but not required.

[2] This is the cost associated with the unit executing the project on the ground and could be financed out of trust fund or co-financing sources. For EAs within the ceiling, PMC could be up to 10% of the Subtotal GEF Project Financing.

$ 0.00