Responsible Futures Matter
Edited by Moazzem Hossain, Tapan Sarker and Malcolm McIntosh
Chapter 10: Sustainable resource development in Asia: challenges and opportunities
This chapter examines the role that mineral resources and sustainable mining may play in Asia’s future growth and development. Across Asia, several big and small nations are endowed with rich deposits of valuable metals and minerals. While for some of these nations, mining has remained a long-term economic activity, for other smaller nations, minerals development is slowly but surely catching momentum. This chapter has a two fold purpose: firstly, it reflects on the experiences of other resource-rich regions in the world and in doing so, suggests how resource development can provide long-term opportunities to enhance the socio-economic status of Asia’s developing regions. Secondly, it acknowledges the transformational nature of mining from a socio-cultural and ecological standpoint. A key objective of this chapter, therefore, is to understand how Asia’s current and future policymakers might best optimize opportunities provided by mining without succumbing to the many potential challenges – social, environmental, institutional as well as economic – inherent to resource development. The chapter is organized in six parts. The following section ‘Sustainable Resource Development: Principles and Practice’ provides a theoretical underpinning of the key principles and characteristics identified with sustainable resource development. The section ‘Resource Development in Asia: An Intellectual Review’ reviews the state of mining in Asia and identifies the region’s vital resource sector players.
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