Official: Saudi Arabia is rich in many rare earth minerals - energy

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  • Saudi Arabia is rich in minerals that are in high demand, such as copper, phosphates and iron ore
  • The value of untapped minerals in the Arab Shield region alone, estimated at 1.3 trillion dollars
  • The National Geological Database provides access to 80 years of data
  • The Saudi mining sector has succeeded in attracting more than $8 billion in investments

The Deputy Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources for Mining Affairs in Saudi Arabia, Eng. Khalid bin Saleh Al-Mudaifer, said that Saudi Arabia is rich in many rare earth minerals.

He added that the rare earth minerals in Saudi Arabia come along with various other types of minerals, including those used in the manufacture of technologies necessary to build a sustainable future, for which there is a significant increase in demand, including copper, phosphate and iron ore.

This came in his speech during his participation in the African Mining Conference “Indaba”, which will be held in Cape Town from May 9 to 12, according to the Saudi Press Agency, “SPA”.

He pointed out that the value of untapped minerals in the Arab Shield region alone is estimated at 1.3 trillion dollars.

In his speech, Al-Mudaifer spoke about the qualitative opportunities that await investors and mining companies in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, stressing that his country enjoys a vibrant and rapidly developing investment climate.

80-year-old treasure chest

In his speech, the Deputy Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources for Mining Affairs in Saudi Arabia, Eng. Khalid bin Saleh Al-Mudaifer, touched on the recently launched National Geological Database.

He said the base provides online access to the equivalent of 80 years of geological, geophysical and geochemical data; Including thousands of detailed reports on mining goals and prospects.

rare earth metals
Part of the Africa Mining Conference 2022

Al-Mudaifer stressed that the mining sector in the Kingdom attaches great importance to “sustainability”, as it is one of the basic principles of the mining strategy, which aims to protect the environment and preserve the health and safety of workers in the sector.

In this regard, he pointed out that Saudi Arabia launched in 2019 the Sustainability Council for the Industry and Mineral Resources System, to achieve a balance between the economic value of mining and environmental protection.

Invitation to cooperate

Eng. Khaled Al-Mudaifer called on participants in the African Mining Conference “Indaba”, companies and those interested in the mining industry, to cooperate together in order to overcome the challenges facing the sector, and thus “to make the most of the rich geological potential to create a vibrant, successful and sustainable mining sector.”

He pointed out that within the framework of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, visions and programs have been developed to develop the mining sector to become the third pillar of the Saudi industry, in addition to approving the comprehensive strategy for mining and metallurgical industries, which was built on four pillars:

  • Launching a regional geological survey program to provide and disseminate geophysical and geochemical data to reduce investment risks.
  • Providing a favorable investment environment, by developing the legal and regulatory framework for mining in the Kingdom.
  • Work on reviewing environmental, social and corporate governance practices.
  • Work to reach integrated value chains and provide support and incentives that reach 90% to investors.

mining sector in saudi arabia

The Deputy Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources for Mining Affairs, Eng. Khaled Al-Mudaifer, touched on the successes witnessed by the Saudi mining sector, pointing out that they are based on a variety of advantages intended for potential investors, such as: high local demand for mineral products, and the Kingdom’s geographical location near the economic markets Globally, as well as its location in the middle of the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Europe.

rare earth metals
Mining Conference in Africa in a previous version

He cited some examples of the success of the steps taken by the Kingdom to develop the mining sector, which achieved record revenues in 2021 amounting to 727 million riyals ($194 million).

He added that the Saudi mining sector succeeded in attracting more than 30 billion riyals ($8 billion) of investments, in addition to stimulating additional investments worth 120 billion riyals ($32 billion) in a number of projects that are currently being studied.

He explained that the Saudi Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources received 930 requests for exploration licenses, of which 145 were 100% from foreign companies.

Saudi participation in the African Mining Conference

Saudi Arabia is participating in the activities of the African Mining Conference “Indaba” through a 4-day exhibition under the umbrella of “Invest in Saudi”. According to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The exhibition includes representatives from the Saudi government agencies and the private sector, including: the Ministry of Investment, the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program “NADLP”, the Saudi Geological Survey, the National Center for Industrial Development and Ma’aden Company.

The Saudi pavilion showcases the Kingdom’s continuous efforts to advance the mining sector by facilitating access to geological data, in addition to the updates made to regulations and legislation to create a climate to attract investments, build foundations for sustainability, and develop a mining sector based on integrated value chains.

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