Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on July 29 laid the first stone in the foundation of a $2-billion copper-processing plant. The new factory is to be erected within the country’s only copper producer, Almalyk Mining and Metallurgical Complex (AMMC). It will process 60 million tons of ore annually.
At the second stage, according to plans, the processing capacity would expand to 160 million tons, which is three times more than today. Upon reaching full capacity in 2028, the plant would be able to produce 400,000 tons of copper, 50 tons of gold and 270 tons of silver.
“I cordially congratulate all of you on today’s joyful event – the start of construction of the new copper-processing plant at the Almalyk Mining and Metallurgical Combine,” President Shavkat Mirziyoyev said. “On the eve of the 30th anniversary of our country’s independence, we are starting to implement such a large-scale project with good hopes. This important event is vivid evidence of the beginning of a new era not only in the life of the plant, but also in the history of domestic industry”.
The activity of AMMC in recent years has reached new heights, with copper production volume expanding 1.5-fold, to 150,000 tons.
Over the past three years, 475 wells with a total length of 206,000 meters have been drilled at the fields of the combine. More than 100,000 ore samples from these deposits were thoroughly analyzed in foreign laboratories. According to international evaluation criteria, the total copper reserves are estimated at 45 million tons and the gold reserves are more than 5,000 tons. These are the highest rates in the world.
The ore mined here contains silver, molybdenum, selenium, tellurium, rhenium and other rare metals.
Mirziyoyev said that the AMMC would become one of the world leaders in the field of mining and the metallurgical industry.
“In the future, the volume of products made by the plant will increase more than 3-fold, and its cost will increase from the current $2.5 billion to about $8 billion. There will be 11,000 new high-tech jobs. This will expand the access of our young people to such modern professions as a geologist, engineer, technologist, designer, programmer and others. The achievement of these majestic plans will be a truly revolutionary step, ” he noted.
From next year, the Uzbek government plans to switch geological exploration to the international JORC standards. In the next five years, the volume of ore extraction and processing is set to increase from 130 million to 300 million tons per annum.
Companies from Canada, France, Japan, Turkey, China and other countries are currently working on geological exploration and development of deposits in the country.
Mirziyoyev also said that he was planning to reduce the tax rates for the extraction of copper and gold from 10% to 7%, natural gas and oil to 10%, uranium to 8%, as well as tungsten from 10% to 2.7%. This, according to him, would arouse great interest among investors. (Uzreport/Ukrainian metal)