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Oman to offer 110 mining blocks for investment

Around 110 mining blocks, bundled with preapproved permits and approvals, will be offered for investment in a competitive tender to be floated shortly, according to a senior official of Oman’s Public Authority for Mining (PAM).

Dr Salim bin Ali Al Mahrouqi, director general of investment affairs, said that the mining blocks represent the first tranche of multiple waves of mining concessions due to be awarded for investment and development under the authority’s new mining strategy for the sultanate, said the Oman Daily Observer report..

Al Mahrouqi was speaking at the ongoing Oman Mining Expo, a three-day event being held in Muscat.

He said that the first lot of preapproved mining blocks, covering a total acreage of 19,844 sq km and distributed across Oman, will be offered over the June-July timeframe of this year.

Al Mahrouqi added that concession awards will follow shortly thereafter during August-September.

Contained in these 110 blocks, Dr Al Mahrouqi noted that there are as many as 13 different industrial minerals and ores awaiting development and commercialisation. Chromite leads the tally with as many as 30 blocks (with an aggregate acreage of 13,984 sq km) on offer for investment in the initial list. Other types of minerals targeted for development are dolomite (20 blocks), marble (13), limestone (12), silica (8), laterite (8), feldspar (5), carbonatite (4), gypsum (3), kaolin (2), attapulgite (2), potter’s clay (2), and basalt (1).

Dr Al Mahrouqi stated that the competitive and transparency system underpinning the tendering and award of PAM’s preapproved mining blocks is designed to help maximise value generation from Oman’s increasingly vital mining and mineral processing industry.

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