Tue, 13 Jun 2017 08:41 - Updated Tue, 13 Jun 2017 08:41
Gold mining in Huíla next year
Lubango - The beginning of gold mining in Huíla province as from 2018 could set the relaunch of exploration of the region?s huge geological and mineral resources potential, currently limited to the extraction of ornamental rocks and mineral water.
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By José Krithinas
Data from the National Geological Plan (PLANAGEO) indicate that Huíla province also has a potential that includes iron ore, copper, manganese, potassium, diamond, zircon and magnesium, quartz and amethyst and others, which, once exploited might boost the economy of the region and of the country.
It is in this perspective that the Government, through the Ministry of Geology and Mining, invested in PLANAGEO, which allowed the survey and location of gold ore deposits in the municipalities of Chipindo, Bambi and Jamba, in the Limpopo.
Prospecting is still ongoing, but preliminary data indicate that the Limpopo mine has more advanced conditions for effective start-up in less than two years, with a cost of Usd 288 million.
This process is expected to culminate with the construction of infrastructures and assembly of equipment in the mines this year, to start production in 2018, generating over 250 direct jobs.
Limpopo will be the country's first gold exploration in post-independence. The extraction of the mineral will be made on a concession of 1,930 square kilometers.
The prospect indicates, in the first phase, earnings of Usd 25 million a year. In the initial phase, an annual extraction of 780,000 tons is expected, resulting in the production of 22,218 ounces.
With the implementation of the Mining Industry Diversification Programme, the Government has been designing and implementing measures to broaden and accelerate the use of minerals other than oil.
In the first phase, the gold exploration will create more than 250 jobs, most of which will be occupied by local manpower, who will receive specific training from the Jamba mining school.
With the opening of the process, the Government built a specific school for mineral exploration in Jamba's capital town, where hundreds of young people were trained in various specialties.
The exploration of gold in the two municipalities will also diversify the sources of revenue
for the State’s coffers, thus allowing the Government to implement development programmes for the region, in particular, and for the country as a whole.
The municipality of Jamba particularly will become a typical mining area after the exploitation of iron, offering residents opportunities to participate in its growth, deepening the process of diversification and bringing the financial crisis in the country to an end.
With the production of gold, the communication routes between the municipal headquarters and the exploration areas will be rehabilitated, including the construction of social and economic infrastructures that will serve, not only to support the process, but also the population.
Therefore, the Jamba airfield, the roads, residences for personnel, mining schools and laboratories have been rehabilitated, which will attract national and foreign citizens interested in investing and residing in the municipality.
The start of the project is awaited with much anxiety by the authorities and population of these municipalities, situated between 315 and 456 kilometres east of Lubango city, the headquarters of Huíla province.
The process will revitalise the Jamba-Matala-Quipungo-Lubango and Namibe corridors, as well as that of Chipindo-Caconda-Caluquembe-Cacula-Lubango to Namibe province, generating income and a new pace for the region's socio-economic development.
Iron mining in 2018
With a production target of 1.8 million tons of iron in the first year, operation will also start next year, within the framework of the Cassinga Mine-Steel Project (PMSC).
It is the reactivation of that mining operation, initiated by the Government in 2010 entrusted to the National Iron Company of Angola (Ferrangol).
Under the project, Ferrangol is to set up partnerships with national and international private investors for the exploration in the North and South Kassinga mines.
More than 6,217 citizens will gain a job in the project, 800 of which in the extraction of iron ore, 750 in coal exploration, 1,6000 in plantations, 596 in the steel industry, 1, 146 in the Moçâmedes Railway and 717 in the administrative area.
Another 184 will be deployed in Sacomar town, Namibe province, 286 in Tchamutete and 88 in the company that will be the centre of the project.
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