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Kedah to tap into RM62 billion worth of rare earth element

The date of: 2020-12-03
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source:Free Malaysia Today

ALOR SETAR: Kedah yesterday announced an agreement with a Kuala Lumpur-based joint venture company to mine for a rare earth element (REE) said to be found in abundance in parts of the state.

The deal with the company, which is believed to have an international partner, will allow it to extract the mineral that Kedah Menteri Besar Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor said could be worth up to RM62 billion.

“This mineral is Allah’s gift to us in Kedah. Such a find would change the lives of our people forever.

“The REE was not radioactive and was found in Sik, Ulu Muda and Baling, and I hear in some parts of Lenggong, Perak too. It has been common knowledge to geologists for the past 20 years,” he said in a press conference here yesterday.

According to Sanusi, the deal between the state government and the company was signed last week but he declined to name the mineral nor the name of the company involved.

He said the KL company would not be carrying out any mining, but small pipes would be used to extract the mineral.

“Once the company discovers the mineral, they are to declare it to us. They will be boring tiny pipes in certain areas in their search,” he said.

Separately, Sanusi hoped that the federal government would change its policy on minerals, where the resources would be made to enrich locals, instead of outsiders reaping its benefit.

Last July, the government said that the country has RM732 billion worth of metal mineral reserves and the government was looking into exploring them to boost the economy.

Former natural resources minister Xavier Jayakumar told the Dewan Rakyat that the minerals in reserve are coal, tin ore, iron ore, gold, manganese, silica sand, and kaolin.

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