Pakistan is the country which contains
mountains, deserts, fertile land, forests and precious stones with mineral
sector having great potential. There is a mineral wing to promote and discover
the reservoirs of mineral and precious stones. The mineral wing is responsible
to issue Geological Survey of Pakistan (GSP) and maps. As mineral industry of
Pakistan have great potential, President of Pakistan approved the strategy plan
to promote it.
The GSP has shown remarkable
performance in their publication of geological, geophysical and geochemical data
and maps of Pakistan. With all that it provides data to potential investors and
also highlights the undertaken joint projects and to establish the geo data
center of Pakistan in which it collects, stores and updates the data.
In GSP there are 144 geologists, of
which 9 are Ph.D. ,3 M.Phil., 18 Geophysits; 21 chemists, of which 2 are M.Phil.,
11 photo-grammetry and 25 drilling engineers. GSP's budget for 2004-05 for
regular activities is Rs. 163.013 million and for development activities Rs.
Pakistan used to produce 5 minerals at
the time of independence including chromites, sulphur and coal being mined in
Now Pakistan is producing 40 minerals,
of which 20 are found in Balochistan - all discovered or explored by GSP.
Pakistan has discovered metals, non-metals, clays, chemical, fertilizer and
industrial minerals. A large reserve has been found and annual production in
metrictonnes of agglomerate 366, granite 5,676, clays 2,934,218, barite 26,002,
dolomite 276,668, gypsum 384,513, besides limestone, rock salt and coal.
Chromite, ebry stone, China clay, fire clay, brine, calcite, ochres/red oxides,
quartzite, soapstone constitute medium size reserves. Pakistan has vast reserves
of coal, natural gas, crude oil and uranium.
Large deposits of copper and small to
medium deposits of gold, zinc and lead in balochistan are expected to explored
in 3 years.
There are many gems and precious stones
found in N.W.F.P., AJ&K and Northern Areas. President of Pakistan has
approved Rs.100million strategy project. The main aim of the project is to
impart training in surface and underground mining, scientific mining and
processing. Azad Kashmir (AK) Mineral Development Corporation has trained 50
persons in mining of Ruby. NWFP has set up field camps in Saidu Sharif, Distt.
Swat & Chitral and started training courses in mining and processing field.
The governments of AJ&K and Northern Areas are also working on the
establishment of training center at Muzaffarabad and Gilgit in polishing and
cutting of gemstones on scientific lines.
There is great potential in the mineral
sector of Pakistan with 185 billion tones coal reserves in Sindh, large reserves
of rock salt, low grade iron ore at Kalabagh, besides chemical grade limestone,
gypsum, clay, copper, gold, low grade iron ore and coal are also found in large
reserves. Un-exhaustible reserves of hard granite-basalt and soft marble are
found in all provinces in different colors and shades.
There are so many foreign companies
investing in the country's mining sector. Saindak copper gold project has been
leased to MCC of China, which has exported 15373.47 million tones of blister
copper; 1.5 tons gold and 2.07 tones silver worth US$65 million during 2004-05.
Tethyan Copper Company Limited (TCCL) of Australia plans to invest about US$200
million in District Chagai Balochistan. Balochistan, PMDC and UNDP jointly
discover reserve in Duddar. It contains 8.6% zinc and 3.2% lead. MCC of China
signed an agreement to invest 72 million dollars in Duddar. M/s Shenhua has
prepared a report about the 600MW power generation plant in Thar, Sindh.
Above mentioned facts and figures about
the mineral sector of Pakistan show great opportunities of investment in this
sector. The government also takes care of the private sector in mining. They
regulate the small investors and private firms due to high risk. Government also
facilitating foreign investors by exempting 15% sales tax for machineries and
equipment. Government also levied 5% custom duty on the import of machinery and
equipment. The Government, however, has to further develop the mineral
department to promote the country's mineral sector. As mining got high risk,
government has to give compensation in the form of royalty. Government also
needs to increase support for mineral sector.