25 companies short-listed for investment in two gold and copper deposits respectively

A fair, equitable and transparent process was adopted to shortlist 25 out of possible 41 interested companies that are keen to invest in gold and copper deposits (gold and copper deposits at Zarkashan in Ghazn; gold deposit at Badakhshan; two copper deposits in Shaida at Heart and at Balkhab) of Afghanistan. A committee, appointed by the Ministry of Mines and approved by the Inter Ministerial Commission (IMC), carried out the evaluation.

H.E. Wahidullah Shahrani the Minister for Mines of Afghanistan highlights the investment interest of a large number of worldwide companies in mining sector a sign of sustainable development of economy for Afghanistan.

Minister Shahrani remarked that in line with the ministry’s Business Plan, the deposits were first introduced to the world market at Mines and Money Conference in London. Subsequently, the same were officially tendered on 6 December 2011.

He said that the deadline for expression of interest for these deposits was 9 March 2012. During this period, 41 companies from India, USA, Canada, UK, UEA, Turkey, Australia and Afghanistan expressed their interests for development of these deposits. 25 companies have now been shortlisted and representative from these companies will visit these deposits in May 2012 and will send their proposals on July 2012. Again, proposals will be evaluated technically and financially by a committee, appointed by the Ministry of Mines and approved by the Inter Ministerial Commission (IMC).

It has been seen recently that foreign companies interest to invest in mines and underground resources of Afghanistan is on increase.

The locations of these deposits are as follows:

  • Badakhsan gold deposit is located in an area of 1000 sq km and is 50 km North of Faizabab and 360 km of North of Kabul.
  • Zarkashan gold and copper deposits are located in an area of 484 sq km and are 225 km from North West of Kabul.
  • Balkhab copper deposit is located in an area of 457 sq km and is 130 km from North West of Mazar-e-Sharif
  • Shaida copper deposit is located in an area of 250 sq km and is 65 km from North West of Heart City.

According to the past reports, Russian, German and American experts carried out the preliminary studies of these deposits from 1969-1972. The winner companies may start to carry out reconnaissance, exploration and other technical surveys by the end of 2012.