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Friday, 11 December 2015 11:46

GPB Global Resources Expands Exploration Projects in Africa

By Kester Kenn Klomegah

MOSCOW, December 11, 2015 (Buziness Africa) -- While GPB Global Resources promising a multifaceted approach in financing projects, for instnace using internal funds or financing from foreign or Russian banks, and counting on local and international private investors to unite their capital, or financing from foreign or Russian banks, the Netherlands registered Russian company GPB Global Resources has indicated in a recent interview that it would strengthen its investment portfolio in a number of African countries.

 

Boris R. Ivanov, managing director at the GPB Global Resources, said in an interview that currently GPB Global Resources has projects in Mali, Cote d'Ivoire, Niger, Chad, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Congo, Swaziland, Zambia, and Mozambique.

 

“These involve all kinds of resources from oil and natural gas to uranium, and from gold to precious stones. Some of them, for example our uranium project in Niger or our gold prospecting effort in Chad, have gone through several seasons of exploration and our specialists are now working to confirm the discovered reserves. Others, like the recently signed Petroleum Production Sharing Agreement with Ethiopia are at their launching phase and we look forward to 3 to 5 years of work,” Ivanov said.

 

For instance, in Ethiopia, the agreement envisages petroleum exploration and production in the “Afar” license area. The area is located in the Afar region of Ethiopia in the north-eastern part of the country and covers about 42 thousand sq. km.

 

The agreement secures a 7-year exploration and a 25-year production period. GPB Global Resources is the operator of the project. The exploration period will be financed by GPB Global Resources.

 

GPB Global Resources is prospecting for gold at Ganboke field. In December 2011, in accordance with the local legislation GPB Global Resources established GPB Chad Minerals SARL to represent the Group’s interests in the Republic of Chad and submitted a draft of the License Agreement to the Ministry of Geology and Mines of Chad.

 

In January 2012, the Ministry of Geology and Mines of Chad and GPB Chad Minerals SARL signed a 5-year License Agreement which empowers GPB Chad Minerals SARL to perform exploration works on the field with a minimum investment program of $10 mln.

 

In February 2012, the President of Chad General Idriss Déby Itno, signed a decree which enacts the License Agreement. GPB Chad Minerals SARL is in pre-launch stage of field works in accordance with the License Agreement.

 

In Mali, GPB Global Resources is prospecting for gold at Barila concession. In September 2011 Special Envoy of the President of the Russian Federation for cooperation with Africa Mikhail Margelov visited Mali to hold talks with the government on the issues of economic cooperation between Mali and Russia. The visit resulted in an invitation for GPB Global Resources to consider mining opportunities in Mali.

 

In 2011, company’s management visited Mali’s prospective gold sites, met the officials of the Ministry of Mines. The Barila concession was chosen among a dozen of licenses offered for consideration. The concession covers an area of 143 km , it is located in the southern part of Mali in the region of Sikasso.

 

A local company Marco Mining SARL has been the license holder for the Barila project since February 2009. In December 2011, GPB Global Resources and Marco Mining SARL signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly develop the Barila project. In March 2012 GPB Global Resources engaged in the project as the principal shareholder of Marco Mining SARL.

 

In Niger, GPB Neftegaz Services B.V. (GPB Global Resources Group) is prospecting for uranium at Toulouk-2 and Toulouk-4 license areas. In February 2011, GPB Neftegaz Services B.V. won the government tender to explore uranium in the areas of Toulouk-2 and Toulouk-4.

 

In March 2011, the company was awarded licenses and commenced preparatory works. In June 2011, a branch office of GPB Neftegaz Services B.V. was registered and opened. At present, the exploration program is underway, several wells have been drilled by the end of March 2012.

 

Still other projects are in negotiation phases where the company is evaluating the available resources, partnership or the investment climate. GPB Global Resources will stay in Africa for the foreseeable future.

 

He said that “Africa is a continent of the future. It is also a continent of great opportunities and we continue to work with new countries there, which are not yet covered by our footprint. As Africa is gradually solving the challenges arising from the continent’s colonial era as well as the conflicts, in many cases rooted in the cold war, it is consistently becoming an attractive place to do business.”

 

It is also gratifying on a human level, as the company gets an opportunity to contribute to the improvement of the lives of people, create infrastructure, employment, provide education opportunities or advance the availability of medical aid, Ivanov stressed.

 

According to Ivanov, “competition is a natural state of business. Russian companies historically have profound experience in infrastructure, but also, if we talk about Africa, face the reality of history, when there was a gap in the Russian engagement with African states following the collapse of the USSR. In many cases, Russians have to retrace their steps back to the continent.”

 

GPB Global Resources has been constantly present on the ground in Africa since 2007 and engagement with the countries of the continent goes back into the late 1990's, so the company can be considered as one of the pioneers of Russian business in Africa.

 

GPB Global Resources is an international group of companies, engaged in petroleum and mineral resource projects in various parts of the globe, including Africa, South America, and the Middle East.  (Source: Buziness Africa)

 

 
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