PAM reveals first package of bidding on mining sites
February 23, 2020 | 10:50 PM
by ONA
The volume of investment in exploration and mining licenses in 2018 and 2019 amounted to about OMR700 million. — ONA

Muscat: Eng. Hilal bin Mohammed Al Busaidi, CEO of the Public Authority for Mining, (PAM) revealed the first package of bidding on mining sites with complete approvals. PAM has put two mining sites for investment, starting from Wednesday. The companies will be able to purchase the documents of the two sites that have been put for bidding through advertisement.

This came during a press conference held on Sunday at PAM headquarters. Eng. Al Busaidi explained that the first bidding site is located in the Governorate of Muscat to explore for limestone, dolomite and marble, while the second site is located in the Governorate of North A’Sharqiyah to explore for marble.

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He indicated that both sites will be offered for public bidding through a public advertisement for local companies, as defined by the bidding regulation for mining sites and raw materials.

He said that the volume of investment in exploration and mining licenses in 2018 and 2019 amounted to about OMR700 million, adding that more than 35 mining and exploration licences were issued in 2019.

The CEO of PAM indicated that in order to prevent the irregularities, the bidding regulation for mining projects stipulated that marks have been set for the sites to ensure that the coordinates are not exceeded.

He added that scales will be put in companies operating in the mining field to know the quantities extracted from minerals.

On the gold exploration operations, he explained,” It is known that gold accompanies copper and PAM has given a number of licenses to explore for copper, but exploration operations indicate that the quantities of gold accompanying copper in those mining sites of these companies are still small.”

With regard to gypsum, he said that the Sultanate was the first exporter of gypsum in 2018 and 2019 with 9 million tonnes annually, adding that the mining sector contributes to finding investment opportunities in sectors other than the mining sector, such as the sectors of industry, construction and logistics.

On his part, Dr Salim bin Ali bin Salim Al Mahrouqi, Director General of Investment Affairs at PAM, spoke about the mining sites, the first offering and the bidding procedures.

He said that PAM surveyed all the regions of the Sultanate and identified the sites that showed the presence of minerals, indicating that there are about 110 mining sites covering more than 20 minerals.

Al Mahrouqi said, “The mining areas project enhances the principle of transparency, equal opportunity and equality and is considered a basic requirement for the next stage. The authority adopted it for the economic and organisational value that it will achieve. Public Authority for Mining relies on it to make a significant change in how to deal with mining licenses and direct them in the path that serves the organization of the sector and enhance its role in the economic system.”

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