Oman’s mining giant Minerals Development Oman (MDO) has completed the front-end engineering and design (FEED) work for the $300 million Mazoon Copper Ore project in Yanqul, Oman, the Oman Investment Authority (OIA), which owns a majority stake in MDO revealed in its latest annual report.
The 20 square kilometre (sq km) site consists of five mines with 22.9 million tonnes of proven copper ore reserves and 1.5 million tonnes of production capacity a year.
Project development is expected to begin in 2025.
“MDO has commenced the geophysical and geochemical surveys in the 12 mining concession areas spread over 22,000 sq km with the aim of developing a detailed and scientific database of minerals,” OIA updated.
MDO was granted these exploration and mining licenses for a period of 30 years in March 2022 and approved through a Royal Decree in December 2022.
“A partnership agreement has been signed with a local company to explore Block 4 and areas close to the block,” OIA said on the copper mining project in Sohar.
An economic feasibility study conducted by MDO in 2022 revealed the presence of 2.6 million tonnes of unexploited reserves of copper ore and a decision to invest in redeveloping the mines of Al Al Bayda, Al Araaj, and Al Asil was approved. The Sohar Copper Project covers 1,006 sq km of the copper-rich Ophiolite belt, proven to host clusters of relatively high-grade copper deposits.
A partnership was forged with a local company to extract and process 100,000 tonnes of silica metal per year in Mahout.
Also, construction has commenced on the Sohar Titanium project covering an area of 120,000 square metres. The 43 million Omani riyal ($112 million) project aims to produce 150,000 tonnes per year of titanium dioxide, the report noted.
(Writing by Sowmya Sundar; Editing by Anoop Menon)
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