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Mining and Petroleum

Mali’s mining sector, a rich but unexploited potential

Gold: Mali: Africa’s third largest gold producer with large scale exploration ongoing

Mali has been famous for its gold since the days of the great Malian empire and the pilgrimage to Mecca of the Emperor Kankou Moussa in 1324, on his caravan he carried more than 8 tonnes of gold! Mali has therefore been traditionally a mining country for over half a millennium.

Mali currently has seven operating gold mines which include: Kalana and Morila in Southern Mali, Yatela, Sadiola and Loulo in Western Mali, and mines which have recently restarted production notably Syama and Tabakoto. Advanced gold exploration projects include: Kofi, Kodieran, Gounkoto, Komana, Banankoro, Kobada and Nampala.

Uranium: encouraging signs and exploration in full swing

Exploration is currently being carried out by several companies with clear indications of deposits of uranium in Mali. Uranium potential is located in the Falea area which covers 150 km² of the Falea- North Guinea basin, a Neoproterozoic sedimentary basin marked by significant radiometric anomalies. Uranium potential in Falea is thought to be 5000 tonnes. The Kidal Project, in the north eastern part of Mali, with an area of 19,930 km2, the project covers a large crystalline geological province known as L'Adrar Des Iforas. Uranium potential in the Samit deposit, Gao region alone is thought to be 200 tonnes.

Diamonds:

Mali has potential to develop its diamond exploration: in the Kayes administrative region (Mining region 1), thirty (30) kimberlitic pipes have been discovered of which eight are show traces of diamonds. Some eight small diamonds have been picked in the Sikasso administrative region (southern Mali).

Precious stones consist of the following and can be found in:

Circle of Nioro and Bafoulabe: Garnets and rare magnetic minerals
Circle of Bougouni and Faleme Basin: Pegmatite minerals
Le Gourma – garnet and corindons
L’Adrar des Ilforas – pegmatite and metamorphosing minerals
Hombori Douentza Zone: quartz and carbonates

Iron Ore, Bauxite and Manganese: significant resources present in Mali but still unexploited

Mali has according to estimates more than 2 million tonnes of potential iron ore reserves located in the areas of Djidian-Kenieba, Diamou and Bale.

Bauxite reserves are thought to be 1.2 million tonnes located in Kita, Kenieba and Bafing- Makana. Traces of manganese have been found in Bafing – Makana, Tondibi and Tassiga.

Other mineral resources and potential in Mali

Mali’s Petroleum potential already attracting significant interest from investors

Mali’s Petroleums potential has been documented since the 1970’s where sporadic seismic and drilling revealed probable indications of oil. With the increasing price of global oil and gas resources, Mali has stepped up its promotion and research for oil exploration, production and potential exports. Mali could also provide a strategic transport route for Sub-Saharan oil and gas exports through to the Western world and there is the possibility of connecting the Taoudeni basin to European market through Algeria.

Work has already begun to reinterpret previously gathered geophysical and geological data collected, focussing on five sedimentary basins in the North of country including: Taoudeni, Tamesna, Ilumenden, Ditch Nara and Gao

In July 2008, the Malian government amended the petroleum exploration law, increasing the period of exploration from 10 to 12 years. The new law is aimed to increase the attractiveness of petroleum exploration, transportation and refining in Mali.

The Authority for the Promotion of Oil Exploration (AUREP) is the Malian government body responsible for ensuring that companies comply with the commitments that were made through the various conventions.

Interest in Mali’s oil and gas blocks has been very fervent, with at this time of writing 15 blocks out the 29 on offer have already been attributed.

Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water, Mali

http://www.mines.gouv.ml/

DNGM

http://dngm.org

Authority for the Advancement of Oil Exploration (AUREP)

http://www.aurep.org/aurepfr/

Official site of Malian Presidency

www.koulouba.pr.ml