Largest Mining Companies
Bolan Mining Enterprises (BME) is a joint venture between the Government of Balochistan (GoB) and Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL), each with a 50 percent working interest. BME was formed through a joint venture agreement signed on June 1, 1974 to mine, grind and market barite deposits near Khuzdar and other minerals in Balochistan. PPL was designated as operator under the agreement. The agreement was renewed in June 2004 for another 30 years, valid till 2033.
GoB granted a mining lease spread over 316 acres for exploration of barite in Khuzdar, hosting proven reserves of 5 million tonnes and probable 50-100 million tonnes. BME the largest Barite producer and meets 90 percent barite requirement of the oil & gas exploration companies in Pakistan.
In 2002, BME acquired a mining lease over an area of 13,660 acres in Dilband for iron ore. Dilband ML is valid for three decades. Fine iron ore from Dilband was supplied to Pakistan Steel Mills during 2003 and 2004 but supply was discontinued because the agreement was not renewed. BME is now working on exploring suitable technology for utilization of low grade Dilband Iron.
BME also holds two iron mining licenses, valid until 2026, in the northwest of Nokkundi, Balochistan. These two MLs hold about 50 million tonnes iron. Beneficiation studies on laboratory and pilot plant scale (2006), established that concentrate of acceptable quality could be produced from Nokkundi ore. This was followed by engineering study in 2008 for setting up a beneficiation plant with processing capacity of 0.5 million tonnes run of ore annually. Later, the study was revised and updated for annual processing of 1 million tonnes instead. Mine planning, designing and detailed engineering studies have recently been initiated for mining of iron ore on scientific basis to optimize production from Nokkundi reserves. The study will be completed by the mid 2017 including 8,500 meters drilling for a bankable feasibility study.
An exploration license for Lead and Zinc, covering an area of 1,77,597 acres, in Khuzdar was granted to BME in March 2008. Drilling of 2,100 meters completed which establishes its vertical and central continuity.
Based on a positive result, a feasibility study including 10,000m drilling is being carried out through an Australian Drilling Company. The drilling will commence in June 2016 and study will be completed in June 2017.
Since 2013 BME entered into Barite export business and there is a high demand for BME barite in gulf countries. BME Barite is of API-drilling grade standard and generally having Sp gravity of greater than 4.21 g/ cm³. BME exported about 200,000 metric tonnes barite to Middle East and other countries.