MUSCAT: Work is underway to delineate a new set of mining blocks to be offered for investment in the first quarter of this year, according to the Ministry of Energy and Minerals. The proposed blocks will target the production of chrome ore, copper ore, limestone and other ores.
Dr Salah bin Hafeez al-Dahab (pictured), Director General of Investment at the Ministry, told Oman News Agency (ONA) that the ministry is currently in the final stage of negotiations with specialized companies about several concession areas, most of which focus on developing potash ore (potassium chloride) and evaluation of lithium ore.
He said Oman has deposits of copper, chromite, laterite, magnesium, manganese and other mineral ores, in addition to industrial ores such as gypsum, silica, limestone and gabbro stones. Surveys and exploration operations carried out by Minerals Development Oman (MDO), will confirm their presence, he said, adding that the targeted minerals will help support decarbonization goals.
Last year, the Ministry had signed 12 agreements with MDO, which has started exploratory work, including geophysical aerial surveys. These blocks will be developed by the company with local or external investors. JORC standards will be employed to estimated mineral reserves in each block.