Friday, December 14, 2007
For a long time, as Malawians, we were made to believe that our country does not have any mineral resources. This was particularly true during the 30 year one-party rule of the first President of Malawi, the late Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda. As for me, and I also hope with many others, we just kept wondering that our neighbours Tanzania, Zambia and Mozambique all had and still have very active mining industries yet we did not have any except coal mining at Mchenga (Livingstonia Escarpments) mines. Many were puzzled that how could be the case since Malawi also lies in an area with a similar geological makeup as these neighbouring countries.
But since the year 2000 we have been hearing of successful prospecting of minerals such as uranium. And now we are hearing of Nickel. This is good news as mining will help broaden the base of our agriculture-dominated economy. By the way, among other things, nickel is used to form very important alloys such as stainless steel.
Here is an excerpt of an article about nickel mining in Malawi:
Exploration undertaken by UK-listed company Lisungwe plc in southern Malawi has established the existence of large nickel deposits at Chimimbe and Chimwadzulu.
Chairperson John Watkins says that the exploration work undertaken by the company, which includes a pitting programme, has confirmed that the two deposits contain several million tons of nickel ore – grading at better than 0,5% nickel – which is amenable to sulphuric acid leach extraction for the production of a nickel hydroxide product.
Read more of this article at miningweekly.co.za