BRI Brings Gains For Mineral Firms

- Oct 23, 2018-

Mineral companies are reaping rich rewards from China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative with increased global alliances, investments, higher demand for steel, aluminum and other rare metals, experts said on Friday.

According to Peng Qiming, head of China Mining Association, many Chinese companies have a better understanding of overseas policies and regulations which are essential for their success in overseas markets, thanks to China's well-developed communications with economies involved in the BRI.

"Many Chinese mineral companies are cooperating with leading global players to jointly make and process metals in other countries," Peng said.

Chinese companies' increasing visibility in the global market has also boosted other countries' job markets and economic growth.

Thabo Mokoena, director of the Department of Mineral Resources of South Africa, said Chinese companies' branches in South Africa have created more jobs and enhanced infrastructure.

"We hope to attract more Chinese investment with lower taxes and are looking forward to seeing Chinese companies bring their tech innovation to our country. We also expect more magnesium and other rare metal exports to boost our economy," Mokoena said.

Pablo Terrazas, Chile's vice-minister of mining, said China's rapid development of lithium-powered electric cars will boost demand for lithium, and as the world's largest lithium exporter, Chile is positive about cooperation prospects.

The statements were made at the China Mining Conference and Exhibition conducted by the China Mining Association in Tianjin on Thursday.

To date, China has signed 229 agreements with global geological agencies, institutes and universities in 63 countries and regions, according to a report from the Ministry of Natural Resources.

"We look forward to more cooperation with Chinese companies. They have increasing visibility now in Africa and beyond, and have demonstrated good performance. They have a lot that we can learn from," said John Kilroe, exploration director for Australasia at global leading mining company Rio Tinto Group.

"Such cooperation agreements are seeing win-win outcomes. Many countries are specialized in mining techniques and experiences, while some countries have abundant mineral resources but still lack sufficient tech support for production and processing," said Song Xin, chairman of China National Gold Group Co Ltd.

The company, according to Song, has set up a branch in the Republic of Congo for copper mining, which is seeing positive returns. The group also has a gold project in Russia and will start a new project in Kyrgyzstan.

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