Developing natural resources to help nations become energy and economically self-sufficient continues to be a key part of the U.S. Trade and Development Agency’s (USTDA) program. Plans are under way in many middle income and developing countries for improvements in this important sector, and many U.S. firms possess specialized equipment, technology and services to help them achieve their goals.
USTDA advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds various forms of technical assistance, early investment analysis, training, reverse trade missions and business workshops that support the development of a modern infrastructure and a fair and open trading environment.
The following is an illustrative list of projects USTDA has supported in the mining and minerals sector:
Coal Bed Methane Power Plant – This $502,850 technical assistance program is supporting the early project design, engineering and procurement decisions on a 120-megawatt power plant that will use coal mine/coal bed methane as a feedstock in Shanxi Province. It is one of the first projects implemented under the Methane to Market Partnership. SCS Engineers is performing the technical assistance.
Europe and Eurasia
Kazakhstan Naimanjal Gold Mine – USTDA provided $340,000 to partially fund a feasibility study on the development of the Naimanjal gold mine in northeast Kazakhstan. Frontier Mining Ltd. of Denver, CO, conducted the study and is currently producing gold at the site.
Kyrgyzstan Small and Medium Sized Gold Deposits – USTDA provided a $290,000 grant to the State Agency on Geology and Mineral Resources in Kyrgyzstan for technical assistance on the development of small gold deposits. The technical assistance identified the most promising small to medium-sized gold deposits not already under license, assembled geological data, and provided preliminary economic models on the sites. American Geological Services, Inc. of Lakewood, CO, provided the assistance.
Tajikistan Fon Yaghnob Coal-Fired Power Plant – USTDA is providing a $875,378 grant to the Ministry of Energy and Industry in Tajikistan for a study on the coal mining component of a proposed integrated coal mining and power generation project at Fon Yaghnob, Tajikistan. The Ministry of Energy and Industry is selecting a U.S. company to conduct the study.
Latin America and the Caribbean
Bolivia San Bartolomé Silver Mine – USTDA provided $760,000 to assist Coeur D’Alene Mines Corporation of Coeur D’Alene, ID, in its development of the San Bartolome Silver Mine in Potosí. The USTDA-funded study enhanced and updated preliminary results and included a commercial, technical, financial, environmental, and economic analysis of the silver mining project.
Dominican Republic Cerro de Maimon Deposit Exploration – USTDA approved $300,000 for a study of the Cerro de Maimon Deposit mining project in the Dominican Republic. Pincock, Allen & Holt of Lakewood, CO is conducting the study.
Guatemala Energy Security and Natural Resources Regulatory Reform – A $454,440 grant to Guatemala's Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM) is helping to develop a Geographical Information System (GIS) for the energy and mining sectors. The national GIS project is designed to enhance the regulatory capacity of MEM and improve the investment environment for hydrocarbon and mineral and resource development.
Mexico Terrazas Zinc-Copper Mining Project – A $605,950 grant is funding a study of Minera Terrazas S.A. de C.V.’s proposed Terrazas Zinc-Copper Mine project in Chihuahua, Mexico. The project involves developing zinc-copper mining operations in northern Mexico and will strengthen the local industrial base, promote foreign and domestic investment, and spur employment and economic growth throughout the state.
Middle East and North Africa
West Bank Marble and Stone – USTDA funded an reverse trade mission to the United States to familiarize West Bank business representatives in the marble and stone industry with U.S. natural stone equipment, services, and technology. The delegation visited sites that showcased U.S. equipment and service technologies related to the extraction and processing of natural stone. The reverse trade mission took place October 5-18, 2008 and coincided with the annual StonExpo in Las Vegas, NV.
South and Southeast Asia
Philippines Mining Sector – USTDA is funding an reverse trade mission to the United States for Philippine mining and government representatives for meetings, presentations, and mine visits. The delegates will also visit Washington D.C. for meetings with financial and government regulatory institutions. The visit is intended to encourage greater U.S. commercial involvement in the resurgent Philippine mining sector, as well as transfer knowledge regarding safety and environmental regulation and the administration of modern mining operations. BCS, Inc. was selected to coordinate the visit.
India Nimbri Lignite Mining – USTDA provided $256,142 to evaluate the efficiency and cost advantages of Binani Cement Limited’s use of alternate mining technology (AMT) versus specialized mining equipment in the development of a small, captive mining concession in Rajasthan, India. The project is expected to serve as a template for other Indian companies that obtain similar small captive mining concessions and to expand the market opportunities for U.S. suppliers of AMT. Gustavson Associates, of Boulder, CO, is performing the study.
Pakistan Habibullah Integrated Coal Mining/Power Generation – USTDA is providing $810,000 to Habibullah Energy Limited (HEL) to determine the feasibility of a 150 megawatt integrated coal mining and power generation project in Pakistan. The study would develop a plan for the reliable supply of coal of consistent quality and quantity to an appropriately located power plant, and would also help determine the appropriate plant configuration and technology.
India CBM/CMM Clearinghouse – This technical symposium in Ranchi, India launched the India CBM/CMM Clearinghouse. The clearinghouse will be managed by the Central Mine Planning Design Institute Limited (CMPDI), a non-profit Indian organization, and will be the primary source for technical information on CBM and CMM in India. It will highlight specific project opportunities, facilitate international industry networking, and recommend market-oriented policies. The clearinghouse will also support CBM and CMM training and technical assistance endeavors related to financing, procurement, and other technical and business matters.
India Sohagpur CBM – A USTDA grant to Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), a private Indian company, in the amount of $506,000 is partially funding assistance on the development of the Sohagpur CBM project, the first commercial CBM project in India. The grant is assisting RIL in assessing the market and gas infrastructure requirements for the commercial development of particular concession blocks. Preliminary investments have produced some $20 million in U.S. exports.
Cameroon Nickel-Cobalt Mining Feasibility Study $330,250 – USTDA approved for a feasibility study grant to Geovic Cameroon S.A. to evaluate nickel and cobalt mining in Southeastern Cameroon. As nickel-cobalt mining is not a traditional sector for Cameroon, this was one of the first projects under the new Cameroon Mining Convention. The feasibility study proved to be a success as Geovic Cameroon S.A. began construction of a nickel and cobalt mine in spring 2008.
Nigeria Coal Resource Development – A $410,800 USTDA grant is funding a study that will assist the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development by providing U.S. mining sector expertise in analyzing the rehabilitation and development of Nigeria’s underutilized coal resources. The Nigerian government, in cooperation with the World Bank, desires to redevelop this sector to alleviate power shortages in the country.
Botswana Coal Bed Methane Reverse Trade Mission – In conjunction with a USTDA-funded study on the development of a coal bed methane project in Eastern Botswana, USTDA sponsored an reverse trade mission to the United States by key government decision-makers from Botswana to learn about the U.S. coal bed methane industry. The itinerary included visits to production facilities and meeting with relevant U.S. government agency representatives about the industry, financing, and regulatory requirements.
Uganda Sukulu Hills Phosphate – A $360,000 grant to MISA Inc. is funding a study on the development of a project involving phosphate mining and the production of fertilizer and other phosphate-based products in Uganda’s Sukulu Hills. Steffen, Robertson, and Kirsten Consulting was selected to carry out the study.
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