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Obstacles in the sustainable development of artisanal and small-scale mines in Pakistan and remedial measures

By
Viqar Husain
Viqar Husain
Department of Geology, University of Karachi, Karachi, Pakistan (e-mail: viqarpk@yahoo.com)
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Published:
January 01, 2005

Abstract

Pakistan is a large country with diverse geology and geography. It possesses many industrial rocks and minerals, including precious stones, marble and granite. Some metallic mineral deposits, and large reserves of coal/lignite, oil and natural gas also occur. Pakistan’s mining industry is dominated by thousands of artisanal and small-scale mines, which lack capital, technical know how, modern equipment and trained manpower. Further, local mining practices cause much damage to mineral deposits and are very hazardous to the health of mine workers and the environment. The mining sector is backward due to lack of political will and pragmatic mining laws, and absence of technical and financial support by the government agencies to the small mining units. Moreover, the narrow base of the domestic mineral industry leads to poor demand in the local market and low mineral production. Additionally, the lack of infrastructure and the poor law and order situation adversely affect the mineral industry. Further, mineral-rich districts of the country are socio-economically backward due to hilly terrain or arid climate and, hence, less suitable for agriculture. Sustainable development of artisanal and small-scale mines is possible if the necessary legal, technological, financial, commercial, social and environmental support is provided on a long-term basis.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Sustainable Minerals Operations in the Developing World

B. R. Marker
B. R. Marker
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, UK
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M. G. Petterson
M. G. Petterson
British Geological Survey, UK
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F. McEvoy
F. McEvoy
British Geological Survey, UK
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M. H. Stephenson
M. H. Stephenson
British Geological Survey, UK
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Geological Society of London
Volume
250
ISBN electronic:
9781862394988
Publication date:
January 01, 2005

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