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Alpha Eritrean Engineers Magazine 2018 August Issue

Colluli, the world’s shallowest Potash deposit

Eritrean history of modern mining is dated back to the first two decades of the 20th century during the Italian colony. About 20 small to medium size mining companies were operational up to the 1970s (Yearly Brochure of Eritrean Mineral Sector, 2008). The Debarwa mining by a Japanese company in the1970s was the last remembered mining activity before independence.

From the first day of independence initiated by the attractive mining policy, many company’s has taken leases across the country to explore different minerals and crude oil. Bisha mining; a gold and base metal company was the first successful mining sector established in the 2008. Zara, a gold mining company joined the business and came to production at the end of 2015. Colluli Mine Share Company (CMSC); which was granted mining license back in February 2017 and is said to be one of the game changers for potash industry is on the way to joining the party.

Colluli Mining Share Company (CMSC) which is potash project in the Danakil Depression - lies in the southeastern part of Eritrea, at the NNE (North North-East) corner of the afar triangle, and is flanked by the Danakil Alps to the east and the Ethiopian plateau to the west - is about 180 kilometers southeast of the capital Asmara and 230 kilometers from the port of Massawa. Colluli project is 100%-owned by Colluli Mining Share Company (CMSC) which is a 50:50 joint venture between Eritrean National Mining Corporation (ENAMCO) and Danakali LTD.

The Mining Agreement provides exclusive access to CMSC over the 1.3 billon tone Colluli JORC-2012 compliant potassium resource and associated minerals. The seven mining licenses awarded span over 60km2 of the 100km2 Agreement area, and represent over 60 years of the 200-year mine life determined in the DFS. The reserve is known as the shallowest mineralization depth, which starts only 16m underground, (the closest to find) known to date.

CMSC has a capacity to produce 472ktpa of sulphate of potash (SOP) in module one and 944ktpa in module two, with the possibility of expansion in capacity and product diversification according to FEED (Front End Engineering Design) report. SOP is second highly produced fertilizer in the world, is priced at premium to the most produced fertilizer muriate of potash (MOP). SOP has wide application for high values crops, fruits, and vegetables and for chloride intolerant crops. Potassium sulfate may also be preferred because of its sulfur content where soils are deficient in both potassium and sulfur. One advantage of Colluli deposit is, it is located close to African and Asian countries where the population growth predicted to be high in the coming decades, the bigger the population more food is required. Almost 95% of the population growth over the next three decades will occur in Africa, India and South East Asia. The supply-demand metrics for SOP as a fertilizer expected to grow to increase agricultural yields, as well as being supported by diminishing arable land.

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Alpha Eritrean Engineers Magazine 2018 August Issue Reviewed by Admin on 12:00 AM Rating: 5

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