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Depleting reserves impact Oman Chromite’s 2023 production

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  • Output plummeted to 59,438 tons in 2023, down from 105,992 tons a year earlier

Oman Chromite Company, a public shareholding company traded on the Muscat Stock Exchange (MSX), has reported a 44% slump in the production of chromite ore during 2023 – the result of depleting ore reserves in its existing mining concessions in north Oman.

Output plummeted to 59,438 tons in 2023, down from 105,992 tons a year earlier, Humaid bin Masoud al Maqbali, Board Chairman, said in the company’s Annual Report for the year.

Efforts are now focused on evaluating the potential of new mining sites awarded by the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, as well as the acquisition of other concessions – initiatives that will, however, take some time for exploration activities and validation of prospects, he noted.

On a positive note, however, chromite ore sales yielded revenues of RO 5.9 million in 2023, up from RO 4.5 million a year earlier, an increase of 31%, the Chairman said.

“This is due to the increase in selling prices during the middle of the year and to the increase in demand and sales quantities as a result of the quality of the company’s products and its good reputation among customers,” he stated. Net profit after tax amounted to RO 1.631 million in 2023, up from RO 1.384 million a year earlier.

According to CEO Abdulmonem bin Mohammed al Murshidi, sales of 83,840 tons in 2023 were the highest in the company’s history. The sales figure, encompassing both domestic and overseas sales, represented a 36% increase over the previous year’s tally of 68,937 tons.

Underscoring initiatives to build Oman Chromite’s reserves potential, Al Murshidi stated: “The company continues its efforts to acquire new mining areas and prepare the company to win new mining concession areas according to the current mining investment procedures in the Sultanate. Work is also underway to jointly invest with concession owners wishing to cooperate with Oman Chromite Company and benefit from its experience and capabilities in the field of chrome ore mining. In this context, plans have been developed to raise the company’s efficiency and exploration capabilities and work on the use of modern technology in exploration.”

In June 2022, Oman Chromite entered into a joint arrangement with Minerals Development Oman (MDO), the nation’s mining investment and development flagship, to share the cost of exploration, evaluation and feasibility phases covering the development of two sites at Liwa and Mahdha. MDO, a subsidiary of Oman Investment Authority (OIA), is key shareholder in Oman Chromite.

Established by Royal Decree in 1991, Oman Chromite produces metallurgical and refractory chromite ores for a variety of industrial applications.

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