State-owned mining and mineral processing enterprise Minerals Development Oman (MDO) has signed a contract with Canada-based Sander Geophysics Ltd (SGL) to conduct airborne geophysical surveys covering MDO’s concession areas of approximately 21,480 square kilometres. The two-year-long survey is scheduled to start next month.

Under the contract, SGL commits to conducting a number of airborne geophysical surveys using fixed-wing aircraft. The purpose of the survey is to obtain geophysical data including magnetic, radiometric, electromagnetic, and gravity. These geophysical surveys are crucial to enhance the geological knowledge at surface and depth leading to better target mineral anomalies which will be further tested to identify mineral ores.

On this occasion, MDO's CEO Eng Nasser Saif al Maqbali said: “This strategic agreement aims to build a comprehensive geological database for the Company's concession areas. It is an important step towards the company's efforts to explore strategic minerals in the Sultanate of Oman, which will be followed by a number of studies, geochemical surveys, and exploratory drilling. We hope to be able to identify metallic areas such as copper, chromite, and other strategic minerals which will be eventually mined.”

He added: " These geophysical surveys are playing a major role in complementing MDO efforts to attract direct foreign investors and secure mining partnerships. The survey results will assist us to provide accurate information about mining potential in Oman and building a strong mining portfolio. Furthermore, it will serve as an important future reference for researchers and those interested in the fields of geology and mining. We are conducting these studies in close cooperation with the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, and several other Governmental Authorities, their continuous support is highly valued.”

SGL Chairman commented: “On behalf of Sander Geophysics Ltd (SGL), we would like to express our great pleasure at being selected to participate in the MDO airborne geophysical survey over seven concession areas in the Sultanate of Oman. SGL is very experienced in this type of project, having performed similar airborne geophysical surveys worldwide for over sixty years. Our experience and expertise will ensure the project meets the highest standards in safety, technical quality, and efficiency. Providing training to Omani geoscientists is an important component of the project, and we anticipate a rewarding and effective involvement with our Omani counterparts throughout the project. We look forward to providing final data, maps, and interpretative products that will be valuable for the development of the Omani mining sector. SGL is very proud to be part of this important project, and we look forward to a safe and successful survey.”

Last month, MDO signed an agreement for 12 concession areas with the Ministry of Energy and Minerals (MoEM) in line with recent government directions aimed at promoting the mining sector as a tributary of national economic growth.

Minerals Development Oman was established in 2017 with a clear strategic vision to invest in the mining sector in the Sultanate of Oman and to increase its contribution to the growth of the economic and social sectors by creating job opportunities and building local competencies, in addition to supporting small businesses and developing the in-country value.

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