Muscat – As part of Oman’s strategy to expand the mining sector and its contribution to the country’s GDP, the Ministry of Energy and Minerals has announced a tender offering seven mining blocks for investment in 2023.

The ministry has invited international and local mining companies to participate in bidding for mining rights of several minerals and metals – including copper, silver and gold – in three governorates.

In Dhofar, the ministry is offering three concession areas. Block 71 is spread over 5,638sqkm and is specific to mining of gypsum, limestone, dolomite, phosphates and clay, while Block 73 with an area of 1,551sqkm is for mining of gypsum, limestone and dolomite. The 1,355sqkm of Block 77 is open for mining of limestone, dolomite and phosphates.

In North Sharqiyah, the ministry is offering three concession areas for mining of copper, gold, silver, chrome and basalt. The Block 22-B is spread over an area of 1,144sqkm, Block 22-D over 790sqkm and Block 22-E over 810sqkm.

In Buraimi, Block 11-A, spread over 1,438sqkm, will be allowed for mining of copper, gold, silver, chrome, basalt and gypsum.

Bidding opened on March 28 and will end on May 28.

The Government of Oman has identified mining as one of the target sectors to accelerate its economic diversification.

In April last year, the ministry launched the mining bid for 2022 offering four blocks covering a total area of 9,500sqkm.

Three of the blocks are located in Umm a’Samim desert, adjacent to Rub al Khali, and are ideal for potash-based mining. The fourth block, covering an area of 567sqkm, is located in Mahout, a few kilometres from Shanna Harbour.

On Sunday, the ministry offered three new oil and gas concession areas to local and international oil companies.

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