Uzbekistan plans to significantly increase its gold, uranium reserves

27 February 2019 17:50 (UTC+04:00)

By Abdul Kerimkhanov

Uzbekistan expects an increase in gold reserves in the country in 2020-2024 by 474 tons and uranium by 32,000 tons. In monetary terms, this is equivalent to $ 18.7 billion.

This is stated in the Concept of the geological industry development, put up for public discussion until March 13.

As noted in the draft concept of the development of the geological industry of Uzbekistan for 2020-2024, developed by the State Committee on Geology and Mineral Resources, the country intends to increase the gold and uranium reserves thanks to geological exploration.

The document informs that gold reserves in the country will increase to 89.7 tons, and uranium reserves to 6,200 tons in 2019.

The document provides for the allocation of $ 230 million for the search and evaluation of new gold deposits in the period from 2020 to 2024. As many as $59 million will be allocated for the search of uranium deposits.

It is emphasized that the cost per unit of growth in stocks is much lower than the world average. Thus, a gram of gold accounts for $ 0.48 (1.23 percent of production costs), a kilogram of uranium accounts for $ 1.8 (3.03 percent).

According to the results of 2017, gold production in the country amounted to 89.9 tons. Proven reserves of uranium are 97,000 tons, production was recorded at 3,600 tons.

In addition, Uzbek geologists intend to increase reserves of copper, silver, lead, zinc, and tungsten. The total value of the increase in mineral reserves will exceed $ 23.1 billion. Almost half of the assignments for the work are intended for gold mining.

Uzbekistan is among the top 10 world leaders in reserves and production of gold, uranium, copper, potassium salts, phosphates and kaolin.

As of the beginning of 2018, there are 2,028 mineral deposits Uzbekistan including construction materials - 867, groundwater - 649, hydrocarbons - 244 (oil, gas, condensate), precious metals - 97 (gold, silver), radioactive metals - 38, mining raw materials - 37, and others.

According to the State Statistics Committee of Uzbekistan, the republic supplied gold to other countries for $ 2.9 billion in 2018. This figure is second only to the total export of services, which is fixed at $ 3 billion.

According to the Central Bank, the gold and foreign exchange reserves of Uzbekistan decreased by $ 511 million to $ 25.98 billion in November 2018, of which $ 14.96 billion accounted for monetary gold.

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Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94 

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