The Malawi government says mineral exploration in the country by local and international companies is gathering pace after slowing down following the global economic slowdown, which started in 2008.
Ellason Kaseko, director for the mines department in Malawiâs Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and the Environment, says that, with the world economy recovering, the number of applications for licenses from companies interested in undertaking exploration in the Southern African country is growing.
âGenerally, since 2009, Malawi has been experiencing a boom in mineral exploration activities, compared with 2008, when a numb mineral processing crushing plantser of mining activities slowed down largely owing to the global economic crisis, as most companies could not raise enough money to fund their projects,â he says.
Foreign firms that are actively involved in exploration in the former British colony are mainly from the UK, Australia, Portugal and the Peopleâs Remining belt conveyors republic of China.
The UK firms include Africa Consolidated Minerals, which is exploring for platinum-group metals (PGMs), base metals, radio- active minerals and rare-earth elements in the districts of Mzimba, Kasungu and Lilongwe Valley; Retail Star, which is prospecting for radioactive minerals and base metals in the southern districtsmines manager jobs in kerala of Machinga and Liwonde; and Britannia Mining, which is targeting iron-ore in the Mindale area, near Blantyre.
The Australian firms involved in exploration ventures in Malawi are Globe Metals & Mining, in which is focused on niobium, uranium, zircon and tantalite in the northern district of Rumphi; Paladin Africa, which is exploring fstone crusher project in the philippinesor radioactive minerals in the northern district of Karonga; Oropa Exploration, which is targeting radioactive minerals and base metals in the districts of Mzimba and Kasungu; and MM Mining, which is exploring for base metals and PGMs in the districts of Zomba and Kasungu.
The local companies that have joined the search for china ferrochrome manufacturer plant minerals are Lafarge Cement Malawi and Zagaf Cement, which are targeting limestone in the southern district of Balaka; Premier Team Work and Batolwe Mining, which are exploring for coal in the northern region; and Lisungwe Mineral Resources, which is exploring for pyrite and pyrrhotite at Malingunde, near Lilongwe.
Chinese company ZXJOY is exploring for heavy mineral sands in the Mangochi/Makanjira lakeshore area.
Kaseko says the projects that have advanced to bankable feasibility stage include the Mulanje bauxite project, being implemented by South Africaâs Gondo Resources; Globe Metals & Miningâs Kanyika niobium project; the Bwanje limestone project, in the district of Ntcheu; and the Tengani heavy mineral sands and bauxite projects, the last two of which are being developed by local companies.
âThe Bwanje cement project, which is in the final phase of a bankable feasibility study and an environmental-impact assessment study, is expected to start operations by 2011,â says Kaseko.
The Tengani heavy mineral sands project will produce predominantly titanium minerals (ilmenite and rutile), zircon and secondary garnet and magnetite.