Energy and Mining

Allana Plans Larger than 1-Mln-tn-a-year Potash Production

Allana Potash could consider expanding potash mining operations at the Danakhil potash project in Ethiopia with a larger production facility in an upcoming feasibility study, Farhad Abasov, president and CEO of Allana Potash, said.  

The company was planning a production of 1million tonnes of potash a year, according to Abasov who said that it could increase its production goals.

The company declared yesterday a much anticipated resource expansion and upgrade which confirmed the substantial size of its potash beds. From a previous 100 million tonne inferred resource, Allana cracked out a 673 million tonne measured and indicated resource at 18.65 percent potassium chloride (KCl) with a further 596 million tonnes at 19.96 percent KCl in the inferred category. Abasov noted that the resources would form the basis of a feasibility study slated for later this year.

Abasov said that talks were underway with partners for off-take and financing agreements covering its Danakhil potash project.

In 2009 Allana had signed on China Minerals United (CMU) as strategic investor with both agreeing to negotiate a 20 percent off take agreement in return for 35 percent or about 280 million dollar portion of Danakhil's construction costs. But the CMU deals has not been finalised yet.

The potash mineralization in the Danakil Depression is well known, with mining carried out sporadically from the early 1900s. Other mining corporations in the basin include BHP Billiton and India's Sainik Coal Mining, which is planning to start mining at the Musley deposit.

Source: Mineweb

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Ethiopian Potash Listed on the OTCQX

Ethiopian Potash Corp. was listed on the OTCQX and that it had begun trading on the OTC market's highest tier, OTCQX under the symbol "ETPHF", David Wahl, President and CEO, announced yesterday.

Soloway Group LLP will assist as Ethiopian Potash Corp's Principal American Liaison on OTCQX, responsible for providing guidance on OTCQX requirements.

The OTCQX marketplace is the premier tier of the U.S. Over-the-Counter market. Investor-focused companies use the quality controlled OTCQX listing platform to offer investors transparent trading, superior information, and easy access through their regulated U.S. broker-dealers. The innovative OTCQX platform offers companies and their shareholders a level of marketplace services formerly available only on a U.S. exchange.

Ethiopian Potash Corp. is a Canadian company based in Toronto, Ontario and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The company has acquired a 481 sq km potash asset, in the Danakil depression of northern Ethiopia.

It is to be recalled that George Roach, board chairman of Ethiopian Potash Corp, had announced in the last week of May 2011 that the company's drilling rigs were in the process of being commissioned and were expected to start operation early in June.

The Danakil Depression has one of the largest undeveloped potash resources in the world. The fact that it lays almost on the surface of the ground as opposed to those in Saskatchewan, which are found deeper than one kilometre in the earth, testifies to its significance. Ethiopian Potash Corp has two neighbouring development concessions covering 481 sq km in the centre of the Danakil Depression.

Source: Marketwire

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Over 4.4 Mln Dollars Earned from Opal Export

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Over 4.4 million dollars was obtained from the export of 14,000 kg of opal over the last 11 months, the Ministry of Mines announced today.

According to the Ministry, compared with the volume opal exported and the amount of money earned from the same mineral last year, the income earned over the reported period has registered a significant increase.

Ethiopia has been exporting opal to over 27 countries including the United States, India and China which are its leading customers.

Between 2008 and 2009 Ethiopia had made about 241,564 dollars and 1.2 million dollars exporting 656kg and 100,000kg of opal respectively, the Ministry said.  

Source: Walta Information Centre

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Amerti-Neshi to Start Generating Power in a Week’s Time

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

The 97 megawatt Amerti-Neshi multipurpose hydroelectric power project is going to start generating electricity with one of its two 48.5 megawatt turbines becoming operational in a week's time. The other turbine is scheduled to start operation on 15 September 2011.

The dam was built on the Neshi River, five kilometres from where it joins the Amerti River, both of which feed into the Finchaa River which flows out of the Abay River. The dam's reservoir started collecting water on 22 July 2010 and can hold 448 million cubic metres.

Construction on the dam was started by China Gezhouba Group Co (CGGC) in September 2007, nine months after the signing of the project contract.

The construction was estimated to cost around 137 million dollars according to Ministry of Water and Energy. Out of the total cost of the project, 85 percent of the funding was acquired in a loan from the Chinese Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank, while the balance was supplied by the Ethiopian government.

The project includes the installation of a 241 km transmission line at a cost of 445 million birr.

Additional dams planned to be constructed over the coming five years include Gibe III which will generate 1,870MW of electricity, and Genale Dawa III and Genale Dawa VI which will generate 254 megawatt, and 246 megawatt, respectively, all in the Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional State.

Geba I and Geba II, with the capacity to generate 215 megawatt and 157 megawatt, respectively are in the Oromia Regional State.

In addition, in Amhara Regional State there are the Chemoga Yeda I and Chemoga Yeda II projects which will generate about 162 megawatt and 118 megawatt of electricity respectively.

Source: Fortune

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Allana Potash's Shares Rise on High Quality Find in Ethiopia

Tue Jun 14, 2011

Allana Potash Corp said it found a new high-grade potash zone in its property in Ethiopia, driving its shares up by 12 percent.

The company said that results from drilling in Hole 19 at the company's Dallol property in Ethiopia's north eastern Danakil Depression yielded over 61 percent of potash over 0.90 metres. That was by far the highest grade potassium chloride (KCl) Allana had come across, Dundee Securities said in a note to clients, and rated the company as their "top pick" among small potash explorers.

The company said Hole 12 yielded 22.3 percent potash over 6.8 metres. About 90 percent of potash produced is used as fertilizer, known as potassium chloride. Demand for fertilizers like nitrogen, phosphate and potash has grown dramatically.

Alana has at least 16 drill holes which will be considered for the resource update in the company's upcoming technical report.

Dundee said that Allana would have a large resource upgrade and would be able to produce at exceedingly competitive operating costs.

At present, Allana Potash Corp has estimated resources of 105 million tonnes and "will have a significant upwards revision once the updated NI 43-101 technical report is prepared and completed over the coming five to seven days, the brokerage said.

The potash mineralization in the Danakil Depression is well known, with mining carried out sporadically from the early 1900s. Other mining corporations in the basin include BHP Billiton and India's Sainik Coal Mining, which is planning to start mining at the Musley deposit.

Source: Reuters

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