KARACHI, Pakistan, May 16 (Reuters) - A local consortium has
made a proposal to develop a major copper and gold mine in
southwest Pakistan after a court decision blocked the mine's
development by a joint venture between Chiles Antofagasta
and Canadas Barrick Gold.
Pakistan's Supreme Court blocked the joint venture, Tethyan
Copper, in 2013 from developing Reko Diq - one of the worlds
biggest untapped deposits of copper and gold - following a court
case over how the contract had been awarded.
Pakistan's government was later ordered by a global
arbitration body to pay $5.8 billion in damages after Tethyan
Copper took it to court.
The local consortium, National Resources Private Limited,
said in a statement on Sunday that it had submitted a proposal
to develop Reko Diq and another major copper and gold mine, also
in Balochistan province.
The consortium has proposed (to the) government to develop
and implement the Tanjeel reserves as a starter project,
followed by development of the vast Reko Diq area reserves,
National Resources Private Limited said.
The Balochistan government said it was studying the
proposal, the financial aspects of which were not disclosed.
The local consortium comprises Arif Habib Equity (Private)
Limited, Mari Petroleum Company Limited, Liberty Mills Limited,
Reliance Commodities (Private) Limited (Fatima group), Y.B.
Pakistan Limited (Lucky group) and South Western Mining
The federal government has said it is in talks with Tethyan
Copper about a settlement after the World Banks International
Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in 2019
ordered Pakistan to pay damages of $5.84 billion to Tethyan
Copper. The venture had already sunk more than $220 million into
the project before the project was blocked.
Work on the mine has stalled since then.
(Reporting by Raza Hassan; Editing by Susan Fenton)