January 9, 2012

Ethiopia strikes large gold deposits

Filed under: Ethiopia — ethiopiantimes @ 8:18 pm

Ethiopia’s state owned mining cooperation says it has discovered what would be the country’s largest gold deposits worth more than $4 billion.

Ethiopian National Mining Corporation says gold deposit amounted to about 550,000 kilogrammes/Photo/Reuters

Ethiopian National Mining Corporation says gold deposit amounted to about 550,000 kilogrammes/Photo/Reuters
The Ethiopian National Mining Corporation (NMiC) said the deposits were found in Oromia and Tigray in the central and northern parts of the country where it has be prospecting for gold together with the Ministry of Mines.

“The gold deposit amounted to 550,000 kilograms of gold which at current prices would be worth over US$4 billion and the mine would have a lifespan of 20 years,” the corporation said.

The reserves at Werri, in Tigray region, are estimated to be able to provide 18,000 kilogrammes of gold worth about US$792 million.

The NMIC said it was expecting to produce some 6,000 kilogramme of gold from both reserves within the next three years.

“Preliminary assessments conducted by a South African-based consulting firm indicated that National Mining Corporation will need to make total investments of about U$320 million,” the corporation added.

“Environmental impact assessments will be carried out in both areas before any mining starts.

“Once production starts in both areas, the NMIC will become the country’s largest gold producer,”

The corporation said the Werri area also had 1.9 million kilogrammes reserves of silver, lead (50.4 million kilogrammes) and zinc (42.4 million kilograms).

The estimated lifespan of the mine is nine years. Ethiopia has prioritised exploration of minerals and oil with more than 20 companies involved in mining currently exploring for gold and oil in the eastern parts of the country.


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