Iqat gold mine will start production in 4Q2022
Production at the Iqat gold mine could begin in 4Q2022, the chairman of the state-owned Shalateen Mining Company told Bloomberg Asharq on the sidelines of the Egypt Mining Forum yesterday. The deposit is estimated to hold around 1.3 mn ounces of gold, and USD 300 mn has so far been invested, Ashraf El Amir told the news service.
Shalateen Mining will become the third operator in Egypt when production begins later this year, joining Centamin and the Hamash Company, a JV between the state and Cyprus’ Matz Holding. The company is 100% state-owned: the Egyptian Mineral Resources Authority (EMRA) owns 35%, the military’s National Service Projects Organization holds 34%, the National Investment Bank owns 27% and the Egyptian Company For Mineral Resources holds 7%.
A new international gold and minerals exploration tender could be launched in the second half of August, El Amir told Asharq, adding that the tender is pending environmental and security approvals. Shalateen had reportedly been planning to launch an international auction this summer for at least five areas in the Eastern Desert, including part of the Iqat region.
Background: The gold deposit located in the Eastern Desert’s Iqat region was discovered in 2020. Iqat Gold Mining Company — a joint venture company set up by the Egyptian Mineral Resources Authority and Shalateen — is working on developing the concession. The Oil Ministry said at the time of its discovery that more than USD 1 bn could be invested over 10 years to develop the deposit.
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EMRA signed three mining agreements: One agreement was signed with a subsidiary of Italian oil giant Eni to explore mining minerals used in clean energy projects, while the other two were signed with the AmCham Egypt and geochemical lab MSALABS on training mining and lab workers, the Oil Ministry said in a statement.