MAC/20: Mines and Communities

South Korea, China to jointly develop mines in Asia

Published by MAC on 2006-03-22

South Korea, China to jointly develop mines in Asia

by SEOUL (Reuters)

22nd March 2006

South Korea plans to work with Chinese companies to develop mineral mines in Asia, Seoul's state-run resources agency said on Wednesday.

Resource-poor South Korea, which relies on a steady supply of metals to feed its export-driven economy, is keen to develop mines to take advantage of soaring global metal prices.

"The company plans to set up a joint venture or consortium with Chinese companies including state-owned China Minmetals Corp. to develop gold, silver and zinc resources in China, North Korea and Mongolia," Korea Resources Corporation said in a statement.

Park Yang-soo, president of the corporation, will sign agreements on Thursday with China Minmetals in Beijing.

China Minmetals Group Corp. were not immediately available for comment.

In November, Minmetals agreed to form a coal-mining joint venture in North Korea.

Korea Resources Corporation supports domestic mining and makes overseas investments to secure mineral resources. The agency has been active in China mineral investment and won rights to develop limestone with Chinese companies in the eastern province of Anhui last year.

South Korea, Asia's fourth-largest economy, has to import most of its raw material needs.

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