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Thursday, 27 May 2010

Luapula Manganese, 4th Edition

A useful diagram of manganese price trends in the last three years  to put this article in context. The average cost of extracting manganese ore in Luapula is in the region of $52 - $70 per tonne.  The price of refined manganese is just under $3000 per tonne (the article puts this at less than $2000 which is a gross underestimate - I suspect it was using £s). As the article rightly points out "the value addition is what Zambia is losing out on, because the raw ore is transported through Tanzania to China for processing. So the super profits are reaped by foreign investors, in the same pattern that the European colonial powers used to follow". If Zambia can process the manganese it could reap at least $1000 per tonne, if say it costs $1500 to process plus export costs (assuming manganese remains above $2500, which it has always done. In the meantime there are moves towards setting up a smelter by foreign investors to reap the benefits and perhaps reduce some transport costs. But very little of that revenue capture will benefit our people.

1 comment:

  1. What is the purity percentage of the ore?? This is not an apples to apples comparison as ore prices cannot be compared to refined prices.

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