[Updated] Ethiopia: NMiC discovers ~ 5 Billion USD worth Gold reserves

Update:(Jan 7, 2012)

The Ministry of Foreign Affair’s weekly press release, ‘A Week in the Horn of Africa’, published, on Jan. 6, 2012, the following news regarding the gold and others metal reserves discovery announced by NMiC.

The National Mining Corporation announces massive gold strikes

The Ethiopian National Mining Corporation (NMiC) has announced a major discovery of the country’s largest-ever gold reserves in Oromia and Tigray regional states where it has been prospecting under concessions from the Ministry of Mines.

Ato Meleku Beza, head of the NMiC, one of the companies in the MIDROC Group, announced last week that the estimated reserves found at Dawa Okote, in the Dembi area of Oromia Regional State, amounted to 550,000 kilograms of gold which at current prices would be worth over 4 billion US dollars, and the mine would have a life of 20 years.

The potential reserves at Werri, in Tigray Regional State, are estimated to be able to provide some 18,000 kilograms of gold worth about 792 million US dollars. The Werri area also contains substantial estimated resources of silver (1.9 million kilograms), lead (50.4 million kilograms) and zinc (42.4 million kilograms). The expected life of the mine would be nine years.

The National Mining Corporation said it was expecting to produce some 6,000kg of gold from both areas within a year of the start of production, which it anticipates will be in three years time.

Preliminary assessments conducted by a South African-based consulting firm indicated that National Mining Corporation will need to make total investments of about 320 million dollars.

Environmental impact assessments will be carried out in both areas before any mining starts. Once production starts in both areas, the NMIC will become the country’s largest gold producer.


December 30, 2011 (Addis Ababa) – National Mining Corporation PLC.(NMiC) announced Friday that it has discovered gold and base metal reserves in Dawa Okote, and Werri areas in Oromia and Tigray States respectively.

Speaking at a press conference here on Friday, NMiC General Manager, Melaku Beza said the explored 550,000 kg gold reserve at Dawa (Okote).

He said the reserve is estimated at over 4 billion USD.

The manager said the company has finalized preparation to extract 80,000 kg of gold.

He said Werri has 18,000 kg gold reserve valued at over 792 million USD.

Besides, he said silver, lead and zinc reserves have also been discovered.

A Preliminary Economic Assessment made by a foreign company indicated the technical and economic feasibility of the projects, he said.

Melaku said the discovery witnessed that Ethiopia has untapped huge mineral resources.

According to him, the exploration has been undertaken since 1996 at a cost of 80 million Birr.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency (ENA)


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Daniel Berhane

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