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The mining sector in Chad remains largely undeveloped although preliminary studies conducted by the United Nations Development Program and the Chad Direction de Recherches Géologiques et Minières (DRGM) suggest that there is much potential. Highly prospective areas for gold, bauxite, uranium, silver and alluvial diamonds have been identified.

Identified greenstone belts are located in the southwest of the country and include the Mayo Kebbi belts (containing the Lere, Mourbame and Pala areas). Gold has also been found in the Quaddai region (including the Am Ouchar, Ade, Ardelik and Goz Beida areas). These regions have been likened to the gold bearing Birimian rocks of West Africa. Alluvial gold is mined (producing about 4000 oz gold in 1999) along the Mayo N'Dala river, where a substantial alluvial deposit exists estimated at hosting several tons of gold. Afko, a South Korean company has opened Chad's first gold mine that is located at Pala, approximately 300km south of the capital, N'Djamena. It is also proximal to the major Doba oilfield development, currently being undertaken by Exxon, Petronas and Chevron. It is not known what the mine's output is likely to be. Bauxite reserves have been identified at Koro, located northeast of Moundou in the south of Chad. Ore reserves estimate 7Mt grading at 57% Al2O3.

The mineral industry was poised to become a significant segment of Chad's economy as the Doba Basin petroleum project got under way, with exportation of crude oil scheduled to begin in 2004. The production of construction materials was a leading industry in 2002. The government actively encouraged foreign investment in the development of domestic hydrocarbons, but Chad's landlocked geography and lack of infrastructure and water remained impediments to development.

Mineral Law & Legislation

The mining sector in Chad is under the responsibility of the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Petroleum, which has several divisions, and of mixed companies under the control of the State. The part of the ministry which oversees activities related to minerals and energy is the Direction Générale, which itself has three components, one each for petroleum (Direction du Pétrole), energy (Direction des Energies), and mining and geology (Direction des Mines et de la Géologie).

A new Mining Code for Chad has been drafted in June 1995 to replace the 1970 code. The new legal framework encourages the development of a competitive mining sector. Its objective is to attract foreign investors to develop the country’s mining industry. From a legal viewpoint, there is a distinction between ‘various materials’ and ‘mining substances’ (previously named ‘quarry materials’ and ‘concession substances’). Exploration and mining activities for mineral substances are controlled by permits and legal titles, which include:

Major Players in the Industry

The following companies are performing uranium and other minerals prospection and/or exploration in Chad:

  • Uramin Inc.
  • Brinkley Mining PLC
  • Signet Mining Services Ltd.
  • Blue Marine Global Ltd.
  • Chad Mining Services

Key Figures

  • Gold production: 100 kilograms (2006)
  • Soda Ash production: 12,000 tons (2006)
  • Coal production: 8000 tons (2005)
  • Tin production:1,500 tons (2006)

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