Chinese company Jiangxi Copper is exploring the possibility of starting copper ore mining at the Mes Aynak mine in Logar province in eastern Afghanistan. This was reported by the Kandahar-based newspaper Taand and quoted by Tass.
“Due to the unpredictable situation in Afghanistan, no relevant work is being undertaken at the world’s second largest copper mine, where the firm has invested.
We are closely monitoring the situation and will start work as soon as it becomes possible,” the director of the company Zheng Gaoqing said in an online briefing.
In 2007, Jiangxi Copper and Metallurgical Corporation of China won a tender to develop a copper mine in Logar province.
Infrastructure development was planned in the region including the construction of a railway and a power plant, but these plans have not yet been implemented.
The Mes Aynak mine has an estimated 11 million tonnes of copper reserves, making it the second-largest in the world.
On September 8, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that the Chinese authorities are ready for dialogue with the new interim government of Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, Jiangxi is also prioritizing gaining resources as its key strategy and would seek mines globally for investment opportunities, according to Zheng.
The rise in copper prices has brought direct benefits to the company’s own ores,” said Zheng, adding that he expected copper prices would stay at high levels given an optimistic outlook for solar power and new energy consumption.
The EurAsian Times / ABC Flash-Point News 2021.