Among the more notable ongoing mineral ventures and projects in the country includes the following :
Malaysia Smelting Corporation Malaysia Smelting Corp. Bhd.(MSC), located in Butterworth, Penang, is a leading tin metal producer in the world, . After the closure of Escoy Smelting Sdn Bhd in 1998, MSC is Malaysia’s sole integrated tin producer and it became a subsidiary of The Straits Trading Co. Ltd. in 2005. MSC's Straits’refined tin brand, which is registered at KLTM and LME, ranged in purity from the standard grade (99.85% Sn) to the premium grade electrolytic tin (99.99% Sn).
MSC had in 2004, acquired 100% equity in Rahman Hydraulic Tin Sdn Bhd, which operated an open pit alluvial tin mine in the State of Perak. However Malaysia domestic tin mine production is insufficient to meet the demand for tin metal production in the country.
Malaysia’s import of tin-in-concentrates, predominantly for smelting at MSC in 2007 totaled 19,994 tonnes, an increase from 12,224 tonnes in the previous year. The concentrates were imported primarily from Indonesia, Australia, Vietnam and Africa.
To ensure security of future tin ore supply, MSC has in recent years been very active in expanding its investments in tin mining activities not only in Malaysia but also overseas.
MSC exports of refined tin metal in 2007 fell to 15,738 tonnes from 19,377 tonnes in the previous year. Its major export destinations during the year were Korea, Japan, Taiwan and Singapore.
Perwaja Steel Sdn Bhd
Formerly a state-owned company, Perwaja is an integrated steelmaker that produces direct reduced iron (DRI), and semi- finished long steel products such as billets, beam blanks and blooms.It commands 17% market share of semi-finished long steel products and manufactures 40% of the country’s DRI production. Its steel making plant, located in Kemaman, Terengganu, has a capacity of producing 1.5 million tonnes of steel annually. Main products are billets, beam blanks and blooms. Its rolling mills in Gurun, Kedah produce sections, H-beams and I-beams, bars, wire rods, channels, angles and nails.
Perwaja also had an output capacity of 1.2 Mt/yr of direct-reduced iron (DRI) and 1.3 Mt/yr of billet. The DRI plant is currently being upgraded to produce 1.8 million tonnes of DRI annually.
Perwaja supplies its products to the domestic market and exports to countries such as Indonesia, Hong Kong, Korea and Singapore. In FY07, 82% and 18% of Perwaja’s RM1.7b revenue was derived from Malaysia and overseas, respectively. Of the total, DRI sales contributed 12%, while the restwas from the sale of semi-finished long steel products.
Kinsteel Bhd and Maju Holdings Sdn. Bhd are Perwaja majority shareholders with management control is held by Kinsteel. The company had recently been public listed on the Main Board of Malaysia's Stock Exchange, Bursa
, under the name Perwaja Holdings Berhad .
Penjom Gold Mine
Penjom gold mine in Pahang churned out its one millionth ounce of gold in April 2007, a historic milestone considering that when the mine initially commenced its operation in late 1996, it did so with the assumption that there was a potential reserve base of less than 250,000 ounces of gold. The open pit mine has turned out to possess a much larger deposit than initially thought, with close to one million ounces of gold still in the resource category and further resource potential along strike and at depth. The Penjom gold deposit lies on the eastern side of the Raub-Bentong Suture line within the Central Gold Belt, which hosts the majority of Peninsular Malaysia’s gold occurrences.
The Penjom gold mine is 100% owned by Avocet Mining PLC, a mining company listed on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange. Avocet Mining PLC operates the Penjom gold mine through a locally registered company, Specific Resources Sdn Bhd.
The Penjom gold mine adopts, and has been implementing, the progressive mine rehabilitation method with much success. It has often been cited by the mining authorities in the country as a model for a successful progressive mine rehabilitation programme.For more information click here .
CVM Magnesium Smelting Plant and Dolomite Quarry Operation
Commerce Venture Magnesium Sdn Bhd (CVM) is a subsidiary company of main board listed Ho Wah Genting Berhad. It is planning to undertake a Magnesium Smelting Plant and mining of dolomite operation in Perak. The construction of it’s estimated RM180 million Plant in Kamunting Raya is currently ongoing and the Plant is expected to be commissioned in the second quarter of 2009. The Plant would have an initial total production capacity of 15,000 tonnes per annum.
Meanwhile all the setting up work on its dolomite operation has been completed . CVM is planning to utilise dolomite extracted from its quarry operation in Sungai Siput, Perak as feed materials for its Magnesium Smelting plant
HWG Tin Mining Sdn Bhd
HWG Tin Mining Sdn Bhd is another subsidiry of Ho Wah Genting Berhad. HWG Tin has been awarded on May 29, 2008, a 10 year mining lease to mine for tin and other minerals on an area of 500 acres of land located in Mukim Pengkalan Hulu, Daerah Hulu Perak, with a potential for a further 500 acres as the work on the initial area progress.
Currently Ho Wah Genting is doing further testing work and Environmental Impact Assessment(EIA) on the intended mining area. It is hoping that it could start mining for tin sometime in the year 2009 to 2010.
With the continuing increase in demand for tin, and the upward trend of prices of minerals and metals in recent years, the Ho Wah Group views that this new venture, which is part of the Group's diversification plan, as one of great potential.
Mengapur Copper Mine, Pahang
The Mengapur Copper Mine is a typical Iron-Copper skarn deposit located in the Central Mineralization belt of Peninsular Malaysia. It was originally found through regional geochemical sampling by the Geological Survey of Malaysia in 1978. The prospect was subjected to comprehensive exploration including 58,000 m of core drilling and metallurgical tests from 1980 to 1993. Mine development was discontinued in 1993 owing to the then prevailing low metal prices.
Malaco Mining began redevelopment of the Mengapur Copper Mine in 2006. By re-processing previous drill hole data using the current economic parameters, a mineable reserve was established. A 1,500 tpd floatation plant was brought in from Australia, erected and commissioned in September 2008.
Malaco is also developing the recovery of oxide copper by using a modular copper metal recovery system currently in-use by IT waste recycling companies. The success of this method will greatly enhance the recovery of oxide copper from small-medium scale mines where the oxide ore reserves are too small to justify setting up conventional SXEW plants.
The Minerals and Geoscience Department Malaysia has completed its mineral exploration projects for metallic, non-metallic and energy minerals under the Eight Malaysia Plan at the end of 2005. These projects are Regional Geochemical Survey of Peninsular Malaysia/Sarawak, Supra Regional Survey of Sabah, Industrial Minerals of Peninsular Malaysia/Sarawak/Sabah and Evaluation of coal Resources in Sabah/ Sarawak.
During 2006, mineral exploration activities continued with the implementation of reconnaissance regional geochemical survey in Sabah, Sarawak and Perak. Follow-up and detailed geochemical surveys were also undertaken over anomalous areas identified in previous studies. These include a follow-up and detailed geochemical survey for gold in Sarawak, Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang and Johor.
In Peninsular Malaysia, Regional Geochemical Survey Project was carried out in Batu Kurau and Selama area in Perak where a number of potential areas for tin have been identified. A follow-up and detailed geochemical survey for gold were undertaken in Setiu, Terengganu; Gua Musang area, Kelantan; Bukit Ibam and Sungai Mentiga, Pahang; and Kota Tinggi and Mersing, Pahang.
In addition, exploration activities for industrial minerals were also carried out in the states of Selangor, Kedah, Johor, Kelantan, Terengganu, Perak, Pahang and Negeri Sembilan. Where surveys for construction and river sand were carried out in Kedah, Selangor and Terengganu. In Johor, a potential dimension stone area in Ledang Pluton with an estimated reserve of 128 million tonnes has been identified. Exploration for feldspar were undertaken in Merapoh, Pahang; Sungai Tupai and Gong area in Gua Musang, Kelantan; Grik area in Perak; and Bukit Air Kuning, Negeri Sembilan. It was found that feldspar in Pahang, Kelantan and Negeri Sembilan are high in sodium whereas feldspar in Perak is high in potassium.
In Sarawak, seven minerals exploration projects were carried out in 2006. Reconnaissance geochemical sampling in Sarawak was carried out in the Miri Division covering an area of 1,500 sq. km. Follow-up geochemical surveys were undertaken in Bukit Demam and Gunung Rawan area. Under the Industrial Minerals Project, four selected minerals were surveyed namely river sand, granite dimension stone, clay and silica sand. A reconnaissance survey for silica sand and clay was carried out in Kuala Baram area, Miri Division while survey for construction sand was carried out in Lundu area. In 2006, a total of 2.86 million tonnes of granite dimension stone were identified at Bukit Jebong Pluton in Lundu.
Under the Evaluation of Coal Resources Project, coal exploration in Sarawak was undertaken in Punang Berayong, Lawas, over an area of 10 sq. km. This was a continuation project from the earlier investigation under the Eight Malaysia Plan. A total of nine new coal outcrops of less than one metre in thickness were identified. In Sabah, three exploration projects were carried out during the year. The geochemical survey was undertaken in Mostyn area, Tawau where samples of high gold content up to 13.11 ppm has been identified. Under the Industrial Minerals Project, limestone survey was implemented in Sukai and Sapulut area. In Sapulut, three hills, namely, Sambulyan, Taliwau and Sinobang, were identified as having dimension stone potential. The Coal Resource Evaluation Project was carried out in the Pinangah area covering an area of 20 sq. km. This survey identified 19 new coal outcrops with 12 outcrops in the west-central area and seven in the southern area.
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