Minister of Industry proposes operating mine waste dumps

2016-01-27 14:22:44

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Draft amendments to the Law on Mineral Resources was presented Wednesday by the Minister of Industry D.Erdenebat to the Chairman of State Great Khural (parliament). The Minister said the government "should promote mineral processing operations on non-balance ore and waste dumps, created by years of mining operations at mineral deposits".

As of today, more than 600 deposits have been discovered, of which 200 are being operated, he went on. From the open pit operations of Erdenet Mining Corporation, as well as other coal and gold mines, enormous waste dumps have been formed. These dumps, depending on the technological performances, turn into unnaturally occurred mineral deposits. "Therefore, these so-called tailings and waste dumps need to be operated in order for the contained minerals and ores to be extracted and used in production of metal products, as the global market metal prices increase", he said.

"So the draft suggests reflecting clarified regulations on mineral extractions from mine waste dumps and tailings, improving metal recovery, commercializing value-added products, and on imposing royalty on final products," he explained. 

To prepare the amendments, a team had studied practices of other countries in processing secondary mineral resources, for instance, the processing plants in Canada recover 40 percent out of the total copper in 0.45% content waster dumps, he said.

With the procession of waste dumps, mineral resource utilization and economic efficiency are bound to improve, as it prevents certain costs for additional explorations. "If adopted, it is expected to raise state budget revenue and processing industry income and performance, create new jobs, and, most importantly, to contribute to environmental rehabilitation," he stressed.