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Former US president Bill Clinton and Canadian mining financier Frank Giustra, partners in the new Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative (CGSGI), are asking the mining and financial community to dig deep into their pockets.

Invitations have been sent out for a March 1 event to be held in Toronto, where comedian Robin Williams and musicians Elton John, Shakira, and Burton Cummings are expected to perform. The cost will range between $25,000 and $300,000 per table, and proceeds will help CGSGI assist mining communities long after the industry leaves.

“When Frank Giustra brought forward the idea of having the world’s mining sector pull together in support of alleviating poverty and building sustainable local economies in developing countries, I knew it would only succeed if the industry was serious about being actively involved,” said Mr Clinton.

Donations to CGSGI from mining sector companies have amounted to nearly $350 million, including Giustra’s own pledge of $100 million. Lundin for Africa, the philanthropic arm of the Lundin Group of Companies, has also pledged $100 million.

“The Lundin contribution sends a strong signal that the resource sector is prepared to step up and take the initiative off the drawing board and turn it into a reality for developing countries around the world,” said Mr Giustra. "I firmly believe that this innovative partnership between the Clinton Foundation and the business community – and the mining industry in particular – will have a profound and positive effect on the lives of countless people in the developing world during the months and years ahead."

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