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app65-25pm-kathmandu.jpgby Shafek Koreshe

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Gemstones of Rs. 500 mln extracted annually from Gilgit-Baltistan PDF Print E-mail
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ISLAMABAD, Feb 7 (APP): Around Rs. 500 million value of gemstones are extracted annually from Gilgit-Baltistan and efforts are underway to explore other precious minerals.It has been confirmed that nearly all valleys in Gilgit-Baltistan are shedding gold and base metals but the need is investment to explore them in order to change fate of the area. As per surveys conducted for gold and base metals carried by Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC) and on the basis of Geo-chemical and hard rock samples, around 11 prospect areas confirmed gold value ranging from 0.10 to 24 Parts Per Million (PPM) in hard rock while 5 PPM gold is economical in the world, Tourism and Mineral Department official in GB told APP here Sunday.

The official said a total number of 3947 geo-chemical stream sediment samples were collected from less then one sqkm to 250 sqkm, covering 45,500 sqkm gold anomalies alone counted over 100, ranging in content from 5 PPM to 300 PPM. Around 500 samples were collected from hard rock including river floats and out crops.

A total of 50 samples pertaining to 10 areas conform gold values ranging from 0.10 ppm to 24.0 ppm according to laboratory reports, the official said and added the gold washers still recover gold from placer deposits of Gilgit-Baltistan.

The area is also rich with white colour Marble deposits of Shigar (Skardu), Nasirabad (Hunza) and Gupis (Ghizer) which are considered to be of international standard.

The other gemstones which are extracted from the area include Ruby, Emerald, Sapphire, Aquamarine, Tourmaline, Garnet, Fluorite, Pargasite, Spinal, Zircon, Topaz, Berylspar, Corundum, Marganite, Serpentine, Sulpher, Moonstone, Amethyst.

The official said local administration was taking a major policy initiative to expand mineral sector of Gilgit-Baltistan and also encouraging local as well foreign investment in the sector.

Accordingly, many exploration licenses and mining leases have been granted to national and foreign investors and more applications for licenses are under process.

 

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