By Nihal Mounir
The Organization for Mining Revival (OMR) has submitted an urgent memorandum to Dr FayzaA boul Naga, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, requesting $100 million in foreign grants over four years. The grants will be for the General Authority for Mineral Wealth (GAMW), to support a project conducting comprehensive studies about Egypt’s mineral resources.
Hamdy Zaher, President of OMR, said that the grant will help GAMW complete a detailed survey of Egypt’s mineral resources. More than 50 types of commercially exploitable mineral resources exist in Egypt. The survey is part of government’s development plans that include creating thousands of new employment opportunities every year.
Zaher said that a comprehensive survey of Egypt’s mineral resources that provides information on reserves of valuable materials such as gold, tantalum, tin, and copper, will enable the GAMW to establish new companies to exploit resources instead of relying on tenders to international corporations. The new companies will be owned by the GAMW, banks, and investment companies, with a portion of their shares sold in the Egyptian Stock Exchange via public offerings. The stock offerings will draw citizens’ attention to investment opportunities in the mineral sector, particularly industrial development opportunities, given that 70% of industries are based on utilising raw mineral resources.
Zaher said that the new plan will drive growth in the mineral resources sector and will attract greater investment.
In addition, the sector will benefit from Egyptian geologists’ expertise and Egyptian society will learn to appreciate mineral sector’s issues and ambitions. The mineral sector is considered the country’s hope in the promised economic rising.
Zaher noted that the most recent study of Egypt’s mineral resources was conducted during the 80s. No studies of Egypt’s mineral reserves, either on or offshore, have been undertaken since.