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Minerals Resources of Nepal and Their Present Status

Minerals Resources of Nepal and Their Present Status

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Krishna Prasad Kaphle, Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle

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For citation: Kaphle K.P., 2011, Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status, available in www.ngs.org.np (website of Nepal Geological Society).

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Minerals resources of Nepal and their present status
KrishnaPrasad Kaphle, Former Superintending Geologist, Department of Mines and Geology, Kathmandu, Nepal

E-mail: kpkaphle@gmail.com Full paper from sample volume is now available for download, Back to click here. © Nepal Geological Society 1999-2011 | Support by Dinesh Pathak and management by Ranjan Kumar Dahal with preliminary web system by suraZ Himalayan Geology

1. GENERAL INTRODUCTION

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Nepal lies in the central part of 2500km long Himalayan belt. Almost 83% of Nepalese territory is mountainous. It is an underdeveloped country with vast natural resources like Water, Minerals, Forest, varieties of Agricultural products and Medical herbs. For the economical development of the country exploitation and proper use of such valuable resources especially mineral resources is very important. The mountainous region and the geological environment there in is suitable for metallic, nonmetallic/ industrial and fuel mineral deposits as well as huge amount of construction materials and dimension/ decorative stones. Continues efforts are extremely necessary to find out more mineral deposits, timely exploitation of these known resources and make multiple uses of these mineral commodities for the benefit of the people. Minerals are the nonrenewable natural resources. Sustainable development of such resources helps to strengthen the economy of the country. Mineral exploration activities were in peak during 1974 - 1980 when DMG and UN funded Mineral Exploration Development Project was in action. All these investigation/ exploration activities in the past were able to delineate quite a few prospective areas and also able to identify some economic and sub-economic mineral deposits in different parts of the country. Government of Nepal should give high priority to explore, evaluate and sustainable development of industrial minerals, high price metals, base metals, fuel minerals, precious and semi precious stones. It should also invite potential investors/ companies (national and International) to invest in mineral and mining sector and establish mineral based industries by giving some incentive in the beginning. Now many private investors are showing their interest and taken 451 exploration licenses for 21 minerals and 80 mining license for 12 mineral commodities (except river gravel and sand mines) from DMG. Few cement, marble and DBM/ talc, industries have been established but none of them are in regular production due to some disturbances. Only some limestone for cement, and very few coal, semi-precious stones, lead and zinc, talc, clay mines are in operation. Exploration of oil and natural gas by foreign companies, first by Shell Netherlands (now left) and later by Texana Resources Co. (USA) and CAIRN Energy PLC (UK) have taken some areas on lease but the work progress is not satisfactory. Mineral resources play vital role in industrial development and over all increase in the national GDP. Present contribution to national GDP from minerals and mine is about 0.5% and on the whole from Minerals mines and mineral based industries sector is just around 2.4 % which is not encouraging but could go above 10% or more if we can utilize existing mineral resources. Once mining activities start natural environment will be slightly damaged but it should be minimize by immediate rehabilitation of the mined area. 2. MINING HISTORY A number of small scale historical iron, copper, lead, zinc, cobalt, nickel mines and many slate, quartzite, dolomite and limestone quarries were in operation in many districts. Old working pits, audits, smelting places, scattered slag and remnant of mine materials are the solid proofs of such mining activities in the past. In many cases the name of the village is derived after the particular mines e.g. Taba Khani, Phalam Khani, Shisa Khani, Sun Khani etc. But at present almost none of these old workings/ mines are in operation due to various reasons. Therefore reassessment and evaluation of such deposits/ mines by DMG or any private sector are extremely warranted for further exploration and mining. One of the examples is Thoshe iron old working which was reassessed by DMG and later explored in detail by a private company and now it is in the process of mine development to exploit iron ore in near future. 3. MINERAL RESOURCES IN DIFFERENT GEOLOGICAL ZONES Geology of Nepal is very complex because of continues geodynamic process in the Himalayan region and that resulted many thrusting, faulting, folding and metamorphic effects. Nepal Himalaya can be divided into five distinct morpho-geotectonic zones from south to north. From mineral resources point of view, the

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Some of these ores were extensively mined and smelted in different parts of Nepal since more than 150 years till 1951 (2007BS) but not a single iron mine is in operation at present. copper. nickel. fuel mineral deposits/ prospects and construction materials/ minerals) in Nepal. 4. ground water. arms. methane gas. because of rugged topography. cobalt. Iron prospects and old workings are also known from different parts of Baitadi. Thoshe iron deposit was mined in small scale during Rana's time for almost 100 years. Iron (Fe) is the principal metal which is used extensively in infrastructure development works. Purchaundi/ Lamunigad (Bitadi). The Sub Himalaya (Churia/ Siwalik foot hills) is the potential area for construction materials. Dhuwakot (Parbat). gold etc. etc. gemstone. petroleum and natural gas. Surkhet. Ramechhap. 2006) did the assessment of this prospect and calculated geological reserve of about 10. Myagdi.g. sand some of the areas in Higher Himalaya are highly promising for precious and semiprecious stones. hematite. to manufacture heavy machinery equipment. industrial minerals like magnesite. aquamarine/ beryl. (UK). The well known iron ore deposits are Phulchoki (Lalitpur). On this basis ten prospective blocks for exploration of petroleum and natural gas are identified. UNDP/DMG/MEDP projects. lead. silver and copper also occur as native state. GSI and very few private entrepreneurs were able to identify more than sixty six mineral commodities (metallic. and voluminous construction materials crushed gravel as well as river boulders. Sirsasthan etc. 4. Bajhang. Lesser Himalaya (The Mahabharat Range including midlands) is promising for metallic minerals mainly Iron. zinc.. lack of infrastructures and financial constrain exploration and exploitation of these mineral resources in Nepal is still challenging. limestone. Taplejung etc. Similarly geological. clay. Tibetan Tethys zone is prospective for limestone. kaoline etc. in Dailekh and gas seeps in Muktinath in Mustang are the indications of the existence of oil and natural gas in Nepal. petroleum and natural gas. radioactive minerals. marble and metallic minerals like lead. Existance of oil in Potwar in Pakistan in the west and Aasam in India in the east is another indicator that there is also high possibility of similar oil pools in the similar geological environment/ lithological horizons in Nepal. tin. Dahabagar. and five blocks by CAIRN Energy PLC. gypsum. agricultural tools etc.5 million ton iron ore. Both the companies did some preliminary field works and lab tests/ works but still they are reluctant to conduct extensive exploration field works. Rolpa. Kachali. Minerals Resources of Nep. limonite/goethite occurrences/ prospects/ deposits are known from more than 85 localities. fuel minerals e. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Gas and oil seepages in Padukasthan. Two of them have been leased by Texana Resources Co.1 Metallic Minerals Metallic minerals are very much used in various purposes in day to day life. petroleum. brine water (salt) and natural gas.. kyanite. Okhaldhunga.. nonmetallic/ industrial. DMG has provided 452 prospecting licenses for the exploration of 21 mineral commodities and 80 mining licenses for mining 12 mineral commodities in different parts of the country. hot springs and radioactive minerals. DMG (Kaphle & Khan 1995. MINERAL DEPOSITS. (USA). lignite. uranium. Phulchoki iron deposit still remained untransformed into commercialization due to its location in the environmentally sensitive area and shortage of power like electricity and unavailability of good quality coal in Nepal and few other reasons. complex geology. sand. But it was totally closed after 2007BS. dolomite. Baglung. Gold.. platinum. Jirbang (Chitwan). gold. natural gas and minor amount of coal. A numbers of metallic ore minerals are known from different parts of Nepal only the important ones are briefly described.Krishna Prasad Kaphle. phosphorite. Thoshe (Ramechhap). However. talc. garnet. They are mostly extracted from their respective ores. MINES AND THEIR PRESENT STATUS Geological investigations and mineral exploration activities carried out mainly by DMG. southernmost Terai Plain is potential for gravel. gemstones like tourmaline. uranium rare metals etc. 1996. gravel. Jajarkot. Chitwan. Labdi Khola (Tanahun). 2 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . Similarly. and Ekghar/ Khanigaon (Bajhang). tungsten. molybdenum. coal. difficult mountain terrain. Iron ores like magnetite. aeromagnetic and seismic survey conducted by DMG/ Petroleum Exploration Promotion Project (PEPP) and foreign Oil Companies like Shell Netherlands were able to trace some promising sites for petroleum and natural gas in southern part of the country mainly in the Terai and Siwalik Foothills. Parbat. zinc.

It was mined traditionally in Nepal since historic time but at present there is no running copper mine.Lead deposit (Lari and Suple) has been proved as an economic deposit and mine development work has been completed by Nepal Metal Company since long time before but there is no production as yet. Kurule (Udayapur). and Sunkoshi along their high and low flood plains as well as in their terraces. copper wires. Copper (Cu) is another important metal which is mainly used in electrical industries to produce electrical and electronic equipments. Among them Siddhi Khani (Ilam).Khairang (Makwanpur). azurite. Myagdi Khola. Dhusa (Dhadhing). Jamari Gad. Khola Khani (Taplejung) etc. pyrrhotite and pyrite. Bering Khola (Ilam). Pandav Khani (Baglung). ornaments. Okhaldunga. Makwanpur.g. Khandeshori/ Marma (Darchula). Bamangaon (Dadeldhura) but they are yet to be evaluated by detail exploration. Few old workings for cobalt are known from Netadarling & Tamghas (Gulmi) and Samarbhamar (Arghakhanchi). Daha Gulzar (Darchula). Cobalt (Co) prospects are not as common as iron. Modi. Baise Khani (Myagdi). Kavre. jewelry. Dhankuta. Among them only Ganesh Himal Zinc . Dhuwakot (Parbat). Barghare (Makwanpur). bornite. Copper ore occurrences/ prospects/ deposits are known from more than 107 localities in the country. Bhorle (Ramechhap). Sisha Khani and Kandebas (Baglung). Small scale copper mines were in operation in Gyazi (Gorkha). 3 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . crafts. Bajura. utensils. They are also recorded from Lamadanda (Dhadhing). The common copper ore found in Nepal are chalcopyrite. The main ore of this metal is niccolite and pentlandite which are mainly associated with chalcopyrite. Budhigandaki. Cobaltite. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. In most cases their ore minerals e. Gulmi. Sphalerite and Galena are associated like in Ganesh Himal area (Rasuwa). making alloys. Bhut Khola (Tanahun). In Nepal alluvial/ placer gold are frequently wined by local dwellers (Botes) from the river gravel/ sediments deposited by the rivers like Mahakali. Ramechhap. dental appliances. Salimar valley (Mugu/ Humla). Karnali. Bajhang. Nickel (Ni) occurrences are reported from few polymetallic deposits like in Bamangaon (Dadeldhura). Myagdi. and few malachite. Gorang & Jamari gad (Baitadi). Kaligandaki. Gorkha. Chhirling Khola (Bhojpur) Janter Khani (Okhaldhunga) are the major ones. Old workings are also known from different parts of Darchula. Khopre Khani (Sindhuli) and oldworkings from Nangre. Most of them are known as old workings. Minerals Resources of Nep. and other household purposes. Bauligad (Bajhang).. Parbat. Phakuwa (Sankhuwasabha). Ilam and Taplejung districts. Trishuli. copper. Labang. Rapti. erythrite and absolite are the common ore of Cobalt. Zinc (Zn) and Lead (Pb) occurrences/ prospects/ deposits are reported from more than 54 localities in different parts of Nepal. Baglung. and chalcocite. Bheri. Bamangaon (Dadeldhura). There is no cobalt mine at present. Chamliya. metal coating and many other purposes. 42 exploration licenses for copper exploration have been issued by DMG (source DMG. Lungri Khola & Phagum Khola (Rolpa). Wapsa (Solukhumbu). cuprite. Madi. Bangabagar. FY2066/67). Solukhumbu. Bauli Gad (Bajhang) etc. Primary gold occurrences are known from Lungri Khola area (Rolpa).Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Nigre and Bhorle (Kavre) area.. Mul Khani (Gulmi) Ningre (Myagdi) are the important ones. Gold (Au) is a precious metal which has a very good worldwide market. Tanahun. Pangum (Solukhumbu). Other copper prospects/ deposits like Kalitar (Makwanpur). It is widely used in making coins. covellite. Okharbot (Myagdi) and Wapsa (Solukhumbu) till to the last decade and they were able 20 to 50mt finished copper per year. Phulchoki (Lalitpur). electroplating. lead and zinc in Nepal. Marshyangdi. Seti. Nangre (Kavre).

Baggoth. In addition to above mentioned metals/ Metallic ore minerals. Mardar Khola and Panpa Khola (Chitwan).g. Radioactive minerals like autonite are recorded from Thumki. Phakuwa.Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Tentalum and Niobium are traced form in the pegmatites and Granites of the Lesser Himalaya. in medicine and cosmetic items. Bismuth (Bi) is reported from Bamangaon polymetal sulphide deposit in Dadeldhura. Chandi Khola and Chiruwa Khola (Makwanpur). tyuamunite. Kathmandu. Bangabagar. Lanthenum (La). Jagat. Titanium (Ti). Arsenopyrite and realgar is the main sources of Arsenic (As) which occur mainly in polymetal sulphide deposits e. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Jamari Gad. Molybdenite is the chief ore mineral. Hyakule. Petalite and Spodumene are the main ores of lithium. Gagalphedi and Chunikhel in Shivapuri area in Kathmandu. making hard high speed cutting steels and tungsten cable.. Niobium (Nb). armory etc. In Nepal minor amount of silver is reported in the zinc + lead ore of Ganesh Himal (Rasuwa). carnotite and cofinite are known from Tinbhangale. and polymetal sulphide of Bering Khola (Ilam). and Mandu Khola area (Makwanpur). and traces in different section of Chamliya River (Darchula). Ilam and Taplejung districts. All these information indicate that Nepal is potential for metallic minerals. Ilmenite and Rutile contains Titanium (Ti). Venedium (V). Among them Gorang and Tinbhangale prospects appear interesting. Panchmane. Lithium (Li) occurrences are known from the pegmatites of Hyakule and Phakuwa (Sankhuwasabha district). Uranium (U) and Thorium (Th) are the two known radioactive elements in Nepal. Minerals Resources of Nep. minor occurrences of Antimony (Sb) Tantalum (Ta). Buka Khola (Sindhuli). Bauli Gad (Bajhang). Lepidolite (mica) appears to be the source of lithium in Pegmatite. Lungri Khola (Rolpa). Bamangaon (Dadeldhura). and Mercury (Hg) are also reported from different parts mostly as associated minerals. Rasuwa. It is reported from Tirche Pani/ Taruka. and different parts of Manang. Nuwakot. Minor amount of Chromium (Cr) and titanium (Ti) are detected from the Iron ore of Thoshe (Ramechhap) and Bauligad (Bajhang). It is mainly used to make alloys with antimony. Cadmium (Cd). Silver (Ag) is generally associated with zinc-lead ore and in gold. Tungsten (W) is a very important element which is used in electric bulbs. cobalt ore in Netadarling (Arghakhanchi) and Samarbhamar (Gulmi). in Bamangaon and Bering Khola. lead. drilling bits. Cinnabar is the chief ore of Mercury (Hg). Rutile grains are commonly recorded in the heavy concentrate samples from the major rivers of Nepal. Cassiterite is the main ore which is recorded mainly at Meddi and Ganera (Dadeldhura). In Nepal tungesten ores like scheelite occurrences are known from Bamangaon polymetal sulphide deposit and few other places in Dadeldhura and Makwanpur districts. Chemical analysis of some of the muscovites from pegmatites of Phakuwa (Sankhuwasabha) has indicated up to 140ppm Ta. Gorang (Baitadi). Celenium (Ce). tin and cadmium. In-situ cassiterite mineralization and cassiterite rich floats are seen in Meddi Khola. But it does not appear as economic deposit. The common ores of tungsten are Scheelite and Wolframite. Tin (Sn) mineralizations are normally reported in the vicinity of granitic rocks. Few other ores of uranium like uranitite. Samarbhamar (Arghakhanchi) and Chau Khola (Makwanpur). Barghare (Makwanpur). Talalov (1972) reported cinnabar from the heavy concentrate sample from Khimti River and Zinc-lead ore from Pangu.. and Baraghare and Mandu Khola area in Makwanpur district. But the exploration activities in the past have revealed that most of them are sub-economic to none economic deposits. Occasionally arsenopyrite is also the pathfinder for gold mineralization. Berilium (Be) can be extracted from beryl and aquamarine which are known from the pegmatites of Khaptad. Now the price of 4 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . Minor occurrences of Molybdenum (Mo) are reported from Khari Khola (Solukhumbu).

silica sand. Bhumidanda and Kharanetar (Nuwakot). 4. Tanahun.50% of the total internal demand. phosphorite. Some of the important ones which are explored up to certain stages are briefly described. Rolpa. Surkhet. Rangmale. Khotag. Except one or two fertilizer blinding plant no fertilizer plant based in the local phosphatrite minerals exist in the country. and few small size magnesite occurrences from Palpa. MgO content 88 to 96% loss free basis) of magnesite deposit in Kharidhunga. Dang. Doti. Most of them are not yet explored in detail and still do not know their grade and quality to utilize as raw materials for industries. Far-western Nepal This phosphorite consists of 5–32 % P2O5.7m thick bed) is confined to massive cherty and stromatolitic dolomite of Pre-Cambrian to Lower Paleozoic age that occur in Dhik Gad. Sanagaon and Dhaubisaune areas in Baitadi. Exploration of phosphorite in the vicinity of MBT was able to trace few phosphatic rocks consisting of <5% P2O5. Arghakhanchi. Bajhang. Dhadhing. Minerals Resources of Nep. Barahakshetra. Chaukibhanjyang (Kathmandu). Nigale (Dhankuta). Baitadi and Darchula districts. Talc: Occurrences of talc bands. Okhare and Nibuwatar (Makwanpur). Baitadi and Darchula districts in the Lesser Himalayan and in some parts of Higher Himalayan region. Bishal and Nigale cement industries Pvt.5cm) are recorded from Eocene argillaceous limestone lenses and beds in Sewar Khola (Dang) and Mari Khola (Pyuthan). Chaukune and Lakharpata (Surkhet). Jogimara & Beldada (Dhadhing). Ltd. Udayapur. dolomite and chloritic talc schist in different parts of Lalitpur. Sallyan.2) has been developed to exploit magnesite as a raw material for Dead Burnt Magnesite (DBM) plant located in Lamosanghu. Khotang. construction materials etc. are known from different parts of the country. Mica: Several but comparatively small occurrences of mica (muscovite and biotite) books are known from different parts of Nepal. Arghakhanchi. Fikal (Ilam). Goichan . Rolpa. Pyuthan. in the past was able to identify a number of large to small size limestone deposits. Junkuna. Bhainse. Kharidhunga magnesite an open cast mine (Fig. gemstones. Achham. Some of the main limestone deposits are Sindhali & Galtar (Udaypur). evaluation of specific deposits and exploration in the new geologically prospective areas may lead to find the potential economic deposits of metallic minerals. Balthali & Nandu (Kavre). Pyuthan.0 4. Syangja. many metals has gone up significantly. Bajhang. Dolakha.7 . Gandari (Dang). Exploration of limestone by DMG. Kajeri (Salyan). 29 mining licenses and 196 prospecting licenses of limestone have been issued by DMG to private sectors In many cases Dolomite and limestone occur together.. 5 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . Chovar. But mineable coarse size mica books are recorded only in complex pegmatite Langtang (Rasuwa).Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Preliminary studies indicate that there is a possibility to find more than 2. Kathmandu. Dobal Pokhari. veins and pockets are known in magnesite. Bajura. Detrital phosphorite fragments (<1mm 1. Narapani and Supa Khola (Arghakhanchi). Therefore. Based on some of the proved limestone deposits few cement industries are already in operation/ production. Similar (1 to 23m thick) stromatolitic phosphorite band is also traced at Tarugad. Sindhupalchok.2 Nonmetallc Minerals A number of Nonmetallic minerals like magnesite. Nibuwagaon (Sindhupalchok). Present domestic cement production could fulfill about 40 . 1970). Gulmi. are under construction and they will start cement production very soon. Syangja. Dolakha. Sewar Khola in Midwestern Nepal and in Khulia Khola (Kaphle 1997) in Far-Western Nepal. Rukum. establishment of more cement factories based on own limestone resources is rewarding. Phakuwa and Hyakule (Sankhuwasabha) etc. Dailekh. Kavre. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Chilingdin (Panchthar).1 Nonmetallic/ Industrial Minerals Limestone: Over 1. Baitadi and Dolakha have been identified. Jumla. Akabu/ Sainsabu. Syangja. the phosphorite fragment itself revealed up to 25% P2O5. 20 million tons of mediums to low-grade magnesite deposit in Kampughat in Udayapur district. 6 new cement industries named Sibom.. Chitwan. Only few phosphatic nodules/ lenses consist of up to 22% P2O5 in Takure.5 billion tons of cement grade limestone deposits only in the Lesser Himalaya. Dhadhing. Baitadi and Darchula districts. Fulbari and Tikachaur (Jajarkot).298 billion metric tons of cement grade limestone deposits are already known from the Lesser Himalayan region only. Diyarigad (Baitadi) and few other place in Lalitpur. Kakaru Khola (Sindhuli). Bajura. Sallyan. 4. lenses. Sonapur. Udayapur. Kaski. talc. Some technical problems appeared during test production of DBM. Galtar (Udayapur). Khari Dhunga talc mine is in operation since more than 2 decade. decorative and dimension stones. Juilgad. Phosphorite (0. Baskot and Bhasukan (Doti). Kavre. limestone. Makwanpur. triple super phosphate etc.. Present annual demand of chemical fertilizer in Nepal is about 150. Khaptad (Bajhang). Tawa Khola (Kazitsyn. and Khanigaon (Taplejung). further detail investigations in the known areas. Surkhet. However. DMG has issued 25 prospecting and 6 mining license to the private sector. quartz. From geological mapping it is known that over 5 billion tons (possible) of dolomite occur mainly in Dhankuta. Palpa. Bajhang. Magnesite: 180 million tons (66 million tons of high grade. dolomite. Morgaon. Rolpa. mica. Jajarkot. Sindhuli.Kandechaur area in Bajhang and further east to Bajura. few others are under construction and quite a few others are in the pipelines. clay. Dolakha. Lekhpatan. Palpa. Dang. Phosphorite is one of the main raw materials to manufacture chemical fertilizers like fused magnesium phosphate. P2O5 content in them is <5% to 10% (Kaphle & Pradhanang 1985). Therefore. Bhattedanda (Llitpur).2. Gawar Khola. Ghorahi. Baglung.000mt/ year. Rukum.

kyanite. and Einfalt et al. Beryl/ Aquamarine of Taplejung (Ikabu.g. pink. They occur in highly tectonized intensely folded en-echelon lenses of sacchoroidal dolomite within the high-grade metamorphic rocks close to MCT. Kyanites are known mainly from Dolakha. They are reported from Ilam. Salt: Brine water that occurs in Narsing Khola (Mustang). Jagat.g. sapphire etc. Lekhpatan and Tikachaur in Jajarkot. Dalchhap and few other places. Minerals Resources of Nep. Similarly hambergite. amethyst. in Kathmandu. 1990. and many other places mainly in almost all polymetal sulphide deposits. danburite. Nibuwagaon in Sindhupalchok are the other known places for Beryl. (Baitadi). Small scale calcite mine is under development in Nibuwagaon. western Nepal are reported. smoky quartz (quartz crystals). Dhadhing and Jajarkot Achham districts. Ceramic clay/ Red clay: Irregularly distributed scattered pockets of kaolin are known from Daman (Makwanpur). are known only from few districts. Small-scale garnet mines were in operation in Budhekhani. aquamarine/ beryl. True picture of barite resource is still unknown. Hanglaung.2 Gemstones Semiprecious stones like tourmaline. Sindhupalchok. Sankhuwasabha. Chhirling Khola (Bhojpur). and precious stones like ruby. Red clay from Panchkhal (Kavre). Panchmane (Kathmandu). Thimi Bode and few other places in Kathmandu valley. Small-scale mines of aquamarine. Sankhuwasabha. Rasuwa. Tourmaline: Five distinct types of tourmaline are known from Nepal (Basset 1978).9 million tons of sand suitable for glass industry has been proved in Karra Khola near Hetaunda in Makwanpur district. Lodantar) area are high prized. Pyrite is abundantly found in Bering Khola (Ilam). Taplejung. sulphuric acid. It is rarely used as iron ore where no other iron ore is available. Trijuga/ Beltar (Udayapur). 4. and Swachi Khani in Sankhuwasabha district. Four small-scale kyanite mines are in operation in Daha and Suneri in Jajarkot and Barah of Aachham districts. Guttu (Surkhet) are used in cement factory. Brine water of these area contains 1. where as incrustation contains of 72. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Urathi.2. aquamarine/ beryl and few green colored tourmalines from Naje and few other localities in Manang district (Tamrakar. Dhokadhunge (Rolpa). Two tourmaline mines are in operation in Daha area in Jajarkot. Chhiding Khola and Chharkabhot (Dolpa) are tapped and dried for common salt production. Phakuwa (Sankhuwasabha). Dhankuta. light orange sometimes with repeated color banding. hessonite and pyrope garnet are mined mainly in Sankhuwasabha and Taplejung districts. (Makwanpur). citrine. Huge amount of siltyclay deposits in different parts of Kathmandu valley is used to manufacture bricks. Nuwakot. garnet. Small scale mining of diatomite is in operation in Thimi and Bode of Bhaktapur district. ferus sulphate etc. Panchmane. Tarkeghyang. Deep red or red colored almandine. Barghare (Makwanpur).8% NaCl and 24. Khining. Garnets are recorded from strongly tectonized lenses and pods of chlorite-biotite-garnet schist within high-grade metamorphic rock sequence mainly in the Higher Himalayan region. Chidika (Arghakhanchi). Pandav Khani (Baglung). olive green with amber colored core are known from Hyakule. Diatomite is reported from Chobhar.. Rubies and Sapphire: Gem quality but generally small crystal of light red to red ruby and light to dark blue colored sapphire are known from in Chumar. Pegmatites of Langtang valley (Rasuwa) and Naje (Manang) are also promising for beryl/ aquamarine and tourmaline. In Taplejung beryl and aquamarine mines are in operation where as the tourmaline mines are still in development stage. There is a possibility to find similar sand deposits in similar deposition environment (e.Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Dadeldhura etc. Ruyil (Dhadhing) and Lari/ Ganesh Himal (Rasuwa). Kagtigaon. DMG has issued four prospecting and seven mining licenses. and ijolite are the important gemstones that are found in Nepal. 1995).5 to 3% NaCl. Meddi and Bamangaon (Dadeldhura).5% KCl. beryl. 6 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . however. Bhote Khola. Clay from Thimi/ Bhaktpur is used in small-scale pottery industries. Eastern Nepal.. Barites are known from Khanidanada (Pyuthan). bright green. Graphite is one of the significant mineral in metamorphic terrain in Lesser Himalayan regions. Elongated tabular inky blue kyanite crystals are cut for gems. Calcites are known at few places as stalactite and stalagmite and dog tooh spar in some of the limestone cavities/ caverns. Baguwa. Lamosure (Hetaunda). Calcite deposit as such in large size is not identified. Silica Sand: About 11. In villages it is also used in house wall painting. Gem quality distinct multihued tourmaline (elbaite) of Hyakule and Phakuwa. minor calcite veins and lenses are recorded mainly in carbonate rocks. in Dudhaura Khola) in other parts of Nepal. Sunamla. tourmalines are in operation. Gem quality clear blue aquamarine of Phakuwa (Sakhuwasabha). Pyrite is mainly used to extract sulphur and manufacture sulphur compounds e.

Granites are also known from the Higher Himalayan and Inner Himalayan (Tethys) region. Bajhang. Sindhupalchok. Parbat. Dhankuta. Quartz crystals are also known from different parts of Jajarkot. Ilam. cobbles. Sallyan. basalt. pebbles and sands are mined as construction materials/ aggregates.000m3. Sindhuli. limestone..g. Darchula and few other districts. Doti. Baitadi.2. Granites are known from. Pyuthan and Palpa districts.2. citrine and smoky quartz are cut for gems. Only colored verities e. Siwalik coal is not economically attractive because of scattered small lenses.261. Jajarkot. Baitadi. Dailekh. Dadeldhura. Sindhupalchok. Quartz Crystals (Rock Crystal): Two small-scale quartz crystals mines are in operation from pegmatites in Khejemi/ Sirku (Taplejung) and Raluka (Nuwakot). Eocene Coal occurs as irregular seams confined to orthoquartzite in Tosh. Lalitpur district. Ltd is developing marble quarry in Chhatre Deurali in Dhadhing. Slate is the common roofing and pavement material that is extensively mined from different parts of Dhankuta. Baglung. Udaypur. Minerals Resources of Nep. Rasuwa. road paving and flooring. Small scale 20 coal mines are in operation in these districts. It is abundantly known from many districts like Taplejung.3 Decorative and Dimension Stones Marble: Pink. Sindhupalchok. Dang. 4. Course grained.000m2 polished marble slabs. massive granites are used as decorative and dimension stones. Dhadhing. Vast quantities of river boulders. Recently Nawadurga Marble Industry Pvt.) Ltd.000m2 polished marble slabs and some crazy marble. Panchthar. Tanahun. Bajura. Based on Anekot (Kavre) marble deposit Everest marble and allied industry is in operation. is established. Solukhumbu. DMG/ PEPP were able to identify 10 prospective blocks in the southern parts of the country. Shell Company of Netherlands conducted exploration in Block no. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle.g. It has drilled a well up to 3520m deep but the hole appeared dry. slates. Ilam and Taplejung districts. Sharma et al 1988) has evaluated such materials (Boulders = 347. Peat/ lignite in Kathmandu valley is mined and used mainly in brick burning. Achham. Rolpa. Makwanpur (Palung and Ipa). (i) Quaternary lignite (ii) Siwalik coal (iii) Eocene Coal and (iv) Gondwana coal.63 million ton) is located in Godavari. granite and red sandstones are used in decoration. gray and white colored marble deposit (1. In addition to that 49 prospecting license are also issued by DMG. GON/DMG/Petroleum Exploration Promotion Project (PEPP) are giving high priority to explore and promote petroleum exploration in Nepal since 1982. mainly amethyst. sandstone are used for aggregate in various construction works. It is producing about 50. Petroleum and Natural Gas: A number of Oil and Natural gas seeps are recoded in a stretch of about 14km in Padukasthan.006. Nuwakot. Dadeldhura. Dhadhing.2.4 Construction Minerals (Materials) Rocks are the main construction materials since the Stone Age. Quartzite is a hard metamorphic rock which consists of mainly quartz. Achham. Siuja. Nuwakot. Sakhuwasabha.10 in eastern Nepal. dolomite. Its annual production capacity is about 80. chips and aggregate as bi-products. Cobbles = 214. Some of the rocks like marble.P. flaggy quartzite and schist are used for roofing. Beni. Since last few years Texana Resources Company of USA and Cairn Energy PLC of UK have initiated the exploration 7 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . Bajhang. Baglung. Azimara and Abidhara in Dang. Rolpa.Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Nuwakot. quartzite. 4. DMG (Y. phyllite. Present Coal production in Nepal is insignificantly small (150 -250mt/ day). Sirsethan and Navisthan area in Dailekh and only gas seeps in Muktinath in Mustang. Bajura and many other districts since historic time.000m3) in the Major Rivers of Terai region. Doti.. Rukum.5 Fuel Minerals Coal: In Nepal low to medium grade coal occurrences/ deposits are known in four stratigraphic positions e. Dadeldhura in the Lesser Himalaya. Syangja.000m2 to 70. Ramechhap. Parbat. Ramechhap. Jajarkot.000m3 and Pebbles = 229. Kaski.205. Sallyan. Based on this deposit Godavari marble industries (Pvt. Dhadhing. 4. Makwanpur.

Myagdi Khola. There is a high possibility to find such minerals in the granitic terrain (granite. The temperature of the hot spring water ranges from 40o to 115oC.Krishna Prasad Kaphle. marble. The possibility of finding oil in some of these blocks appears fairly high. Uranium is a major source of fuel for the production of Nuclear energy. marble. Prospective blocks for Petroleum and Natural Gas exploration in Nepal Methane gas deposit in Kathmandu Valley is known since long time. km area in Kathmandu valley by exploration drilling of over 14 drill holes up to 570m depth and proved 310 million cubic meter methane gas deposit. pottery etc. It dissolves in water type biogenic gas. coal. Its average calorific value is 7200kcal/m3. 2. In course of time DMG has been successful to identify a number of metallic. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Minerals Resources of Nep. Six gem mines are 8 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . MINERALS. roofing slates are in operation by the private entrepreneurs after obtaining the licenses from DMG. A model gas plant is set in Tripureshor/ Teku. talc.. in Mahakali. Tila. gneiss and pegmatite) in the Higher and Lesser Himalayan region and from the Siwalik sandstone. DMG explored this gas in 26 sq. gemstones. and 1. Most of them are found to be associated with Main Central Thrust (MCT) and confined to the river banks e. Kaligandaki. The gas occurs at different depth from 120m to 300m. peat. There are over 29 limestone quarries from which limestone are supplied to cement industries. semiprecious and precious stones. Few small to medium scale mines of limestone. nonmetallic/ industrial and fuel mineral deposits/ prospects/ occurrences and prove some economic and sub-economic mineral deposits and also promote few mineral based industries like cement. mica.g. clay. Makwanpur. 6 & 7 respectively. DMG under the Ministry of Industry is the responsible government authority which is conducting systematic geological mapping and mineral exploration activities in the country since last five decades. talc. works in Block no 3 & 5.000 families for about 30 years. Kathmandu and Baitadi districts. Karnali. Bhotekoshi Rivers. hot water bath to heal skin disease. The GON/ DMG is inviting for potential investor to come forward with the suitable proposal to develop the gas wells and commercialize this gas deposit for the benefit of the people. and in Kodari. quartz crystals. salt. drying fruits. Marshyangdi. talc. 4. Trishuli.. dead burnt magnesite. agrilime. zinc-lead. MINES AND THEIR CONTRIBUTION All the mineral resources that occur in the country are owned by the state. Radioactive Minerals like uranium are known from Sindhuli. Feasibility study has confirmed that the gas can be used for industrial and household purpose and the reserve is sufficient to supply gas to 21. 5. magnesite. It can be utilized for heating. coal. Geothermal Hot Springs: During preliminary study 23 geothermal hot springs are identified. dimension/ paving stones.

boulders. industrial lime. Department of Mines and Geology administrates and fully exercises the Mines and Mineral Act (2042BS) and Regulation (2065BS).Krishna Prasad Kaphle. Minerals Resources of Nepal and their present status file:///E:/SUCHITA/s/Krishna Prasad Kaphle. slates. From petroleum companies the government receives about Rs. Some of the proved economic mineral deposits have been developed and are being used in industries like cement. gold. coal. quartz. paving stones. zinc. which do cutting and polishing of semiprecious and precious stones from Nepal and abroad are established. mineral industries are established and petroleum is discovered in the country many people will have job opportunity and all these will contribute substantially in national GDP. lead. nickel. copper. sand. cobalt. dimension stone.00. decorative stones. brine water (salt) etc. talc. gravel and sand. Similarly 451 prospecting licenses for prospection/ exploration of 21 mineral commodities are issued (DMG/ Planning section). Minerals Resources of Nep. paving stones and roofing slates are the other important mineral resources which have high demand for infrastructural development works. soap) and marble industries. 6. Some small-scale industries are using local limestone. In this FY 2066/67 DMG has collected around Rs2. clay.60.. It is envisaged that if the GON give high priority to exploit mineral resources with liberal policy.2. There is a high demand of construction materials such as aggregate.55. INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY IN MINERAL AND MINING SECTORS There are ample opportunities for the investors to invest in the commercially viable mineral commodities that deserve investment. 9 of 9 7/29/2012 11:29 PM . In FY 2066/67 about 80 mines/ quarries (for 12 different mineral commodities) excluding the licenses issued by District Development Committees (DDC) are in operation.000.000. base metals. Once the more mines come in operation. dimension stones. taxes etc.00 as royalty/ revenue from this sector. A private Company did detail exploration of Thoshe iron deposit in Ramechhap and now in the process of obtaining mining license from DMG. precious and semiprecious stones. gemstones. Under the existing Rules and Regulations DMG issue both Prospecting and Mining Licenses to the interested investors (national/ international) and regularly inspects and monitors the mining activities carried out by the private lease holders. dolomite. Only Two placer gold mining license has been issued to private sector but till this time they did not show any production. Investment in these resources is highly rewarding. within next few years time some more industrial minerals. talk (in paper. agriculture lime. a number of mines will be operated and more mineral based industries and petroleum industries will be established in Nepal. Construction aggregates. gravel.00/year only from surface rental of lease area (7 blocks). Metallic minerals like. coal and petroleum deposits will be proved. are known from different parts of Nepal but they are not yet mined. iron. dead burnt magnesite. in operation and few gem industries. peat.00. precious metals..

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