A recent report by PricewaterhouseCoopers showed that investment in African mining exploration in 2005 had amounted to $5.1-billion which is equivalent to around 17 percent of all global exploration.

PwC reported that although there is a variety of small mining companies that are currently operating in Africa, larger mining companies prefer to invest elsewhere. Major mining companies invest 23 percent in Latin America and 19 percent in Canada.

“About 70 percent of undeveloped gold deposits are in high risk countries and/or are high risk projects,” said Gold Fields executive vice-president John Munro, according to Miningmx.

The main cause is the risk factor involved in investing which foreign companies deal with, as well as the geographical risk.