What will he get from a Chinese copper mine in Afghanistan?
WASHINGTON, Oct. 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following was released today by Hartco Strategies:
Geologist James R. Yeager, who served as Advisor to the Ministry of Mines in Afghanistan, will host a news conference to release his report on the Aynak Copper Tender in Logar Province which shows how a flawed process, the bias of a government official and lack of concern by U.S. officials led to China gaining a huge foothold in exploiting Afghanistan's natural resources.
DATE: Thursday, October 15, 2009
TIME: 1 p.m.
PLACE: National Press Club, Lisagor Room
The Honorable Don Ritter, Sc. D., served as Writing Project Coordinator for
this report. Ritter has 30 years experience with Afghanistan as a former
congressman, businessman and investor.
Contributors include former Minister of Mines Sediq and Mr. Ed Smith, former
head of the Afghanistan Recovery Group at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul.
James Yeager has over 30 years experience in geology and mining and has managed exploration and development projects in the United States, Mexico,Venezuela, Chile, Bolivia and Australia.
SOURCE Hartco Strategies
Larry Hart of Hartco Strategies, +1-202-262-1168 (mobile)
RESOURCE-HUNGRY CHINA HEADS TO AFGHANISTAN
Posted: Wednesday, October 14, 2009 2:01 PM
By Adrienne Mong, NBC News Producer
LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Early on a recent morning we were driving to a shoot when an astonishing sight loomed up ahead of us. NBC News cameraman Steve O’Neill exclaimed, "It’s the Great Wall of China!"
The "wall" snaking before us, easily several miles long, was made of Hesco sandbags and circled a camp for Chinese workers. Though not permitted to enter the site, we could see rows and rows of neat white buildings with blue trim; the temporary structures looked exactly like the migrant workers’ housing at construction sites all across China.
Size apart, it was all somewhat unremarkable, except for the fact that we were in eastern Afghanistan.
"It's the Great Wall of China," said NBC cameraman Steve O'Neill when we saw the Hesco sandbags surrounding the Chinese workers camp at the Aynak copper mine in Afghanistan.
The Chinese workers – several hundred technicians – are part of a multibillion-dollar Chinese investment in Afghanistan’s largest-ever infrastructure project, the Aynak copper mine.
Discovered in 1974 but virtually dormant since the start of the Soviet War in 1979, the Aynak mine is believed to contain the world’s second-largest untapped copper deposits and could propel Afghanistan into the ranks of the world’s top 15 copper producers.
After wooing Afghan officials from as early as 2001, a Chinese mainland joint venture finally won the rights in 2007 to develop the site over 30 years. So far, it has sunk more than $4 billion into the project.
The joint venture – between majority partner China Metallurgical Group Corp. and Jiangxi Copper Corp. – expects production to begin by the end of 2011 with an initial annual output of 180,000 tons of copper that will eventually grow to 320,000 tons. China will have rights to half that output, which it needs to fuel its own massive economic growth.
But the mine is just outside Kabul, in Logar Province, where there has been heightened insurgent activity. Some 1,500 Afghan police are stationed on site with a new police barracks in the works. And although they say they are not attached to the project, the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division occasionally sends units to patrol the area. China – of course, not being a member of NATO – has no troops on the ground in Afghanistan.
It’s this set-up that’s feeding a percolating debate about China’s role in Afghanistan.
Making the world safe for Chinese commerce. OOrah!