Gems and Mining

A third significant sector in the Province is its varied mineral resource base, which is largely under exploited.  Gemstone mining dominates most of the current mining activity in the Province.  Gemstones available for economic exploitation include: tourmaline, garnet, aquamarine and amethyst.  The current level of gemstone mining is somewhat uncertain, due to poor statistics and an apparently very high-levels of non-official exports. The Province also has potential for the mining of alluvial gold, dimension stones, fertilizer minerals, etc.  Other surveyed mineral deposits include: Graphite, Lime, Phosphate and tantalite, mainly in the Petauke District area.  A survey of Ilmenite-Tantalite deposits valued deposits in one particular area of Petauke District at 5bn US $. Gem stone mining has however, remained a “pick and shovel” industry, despite it high profits.  At the time this plan was being developed, only one mechanized mine was heard of.  The bulk of the gemstones are sold informally, with no revenues being declared for tax.  No gem exchange exists in the Province.