Jun 2, 2008 By CLARA CHOOI
By next year, the silver state of Perak should be seeing the revival of its once-booming tin mining industry.
Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said the state was bent on reviving the industry, due to the current promising price of tin ore in the market.
“Since prices have remained stable at about RM60,000 above per tonne, we believe that tin mining is one economic activity the state must not overlook,” he told reporters after launching the National Geoscience Conference 2008 here on Monday.
Nizar added that several former tin mining companies had already approached the state government on the possibility of mining for tin at certain locations or even rehabilitating former tin mining sites.
However, he said the earliest the companies could begin operations would be next year.
“We will issue them permits to conduct their own internal exploration first and this would take between four and six months.
“And if the site is suitable and far away from the tracts of land sited for the development of new townships or industrial zones, the state will give its full support,” he said, adding that the sites must also be sustainable and able to produce great returns.
Nizar added that only companies with valid "mining certificates" indicating their expertise in the field would be allowed to seek approval from the state government to mine for tin ore.
“We will be selective in allowing these companies to mine for tin ore or any other form of underground mineral.
“They must also have sufficient capital to finance their operations and must show us what possible state-of-the-art techniques can be used to mine for these minerals so that minimal damage is inflicted upon the environment,” he said.
Nizar said that companies undertaking mining projects must first seek an Environmental Impact Assessment report and adhere to the relevant laws and directives from related departments like the Department of Environment.