It is rare that an investor like Adriatic Metals, a UK-based research and development company, or its sister company, the Bosnian-Herzegovinian subsidiary of Eastern Mining, entered our country, invested so much money in research and showed such seriousness in business, said Zdravko Marosevic, Mayor of Vares Municipality.
He said that the company has invested more than 20 million marks in exploration of Vares ore so far, since 2017. He explained that Adriatic Metals had purchased the former Energoinvest system, that is, the former barite, zinc and lead mine, that these ores inevitably carry precious and precious metals gold, silver and copper, and that the exploration so far showed that the opening of the mine was justified.
Copper and zinc reserves are of good quality, and the precious metals accompanying them guarantee that they can also be exploited. New technologies make it possible to extract precious metals, which could not be done with technology that existed in the 1980s.
– Eastern Mining is still in the exploration phase. We have announced that in early 2021 we could begin mining the ore and that would be the beginning of new mining in Vares. We have announced that more people will be employed in the coming year. Unfortunately, we cannot respond to their requests with staff, so it is expected that young skilled staff from Zenica-Doboj, Sarajevo and Tuzla Cantons will be hired, said Marosevic.
Indeed, residents of Vares hope that this project will do much good to this municipality. The young man who introduced himself as Admir said that it would be good to think of people in search of gold, but that this is not realistic.
– Who knows, maybe I get a job here in my town, so that I don’t have to move elsewhere. A colleague of mine works at a mine exploration company. He told me jokingly that his pay was not regular, that it never arrives on the first of the month but at least a day or two earlier. And that he is satisfied. Even if they never exploit gold, I’m sure they will find some ores whit which can make money, Admir says.
– I don’t believe in the story of the Golden Valley. If there was a lot of gold, it would have been found long ago. But I’m sure there is a lot of ore in the country. I heard about the company that it was serious, that it was on the Australian Stock Exchange, and that it had recently been present on the British Stock Exchange. They wouldn’t spend millions in research if they do not to believe in making big profits. Well, let them have ‘profits and billions’ but just give people jobs, says resident Samir.
We heard the story of a girl who is a chemical engineer who did an internship in the Municipality of Vares, but later couldn’t find a job until the other day when she was called from Eastern Mining. Quite simply, there was no job for someone who was college educated, especially who was a chemical engineer.
Eastern Mining’s primary goal, they explained, is to focus on exploring mineral resources that have potential growth potential for the company, to the benefit of shareholders. To achieve this, budgeted exploration programs have been developed, including drilling and testing, resource modeling, metallurgical testing and potential mining studies, as well as administration of exploration fields, general administration and geological services for Veovaca and Rupica projects, and other potential sites.
Eastern Mining runs the “Vares Project”, a polymetallic project consisting of two exploration sites. The Veovača mine is being explored at the site of Veovača, which was exploited during the period 1983-1987. It produced zinc, lead and barite concentrates and shipped to European smelters. As several historic wells have been tested for precious metals, Eastern Mining has completed an additional 17 holes at Veovača to list precious metals and publish an updated estimate of mineral resources.
The Rupice site, at Borovica Local Community, contains deposits whose research continuously shows high quality mineralization of exceptional quality, continuity and thickness with high levels of precious and basic metals. Since 2017, Eastern Mining has completed more than 33,000 meters of exploratory drilling with 150 wells, expanding the known mineralization area and defining some of the highest quality polymetallic interceptions globally. The two locations are located 12 kilometers from each other, in close proximity to the infrastructure of electricity, water, rail, road and the city of Vares.
Eastern Mining currently employs 156 people with associates, subcontractors and consultants in various fields.
– In addition to an aggressive geological exploration campaign, we are also doing a number of other technical analyzes in the fields of mining and geology. In 2019, we were able to prove the economic viability of the former zinc, lead and barite mine. We did flotation testing this year and technically proved that we could get metal from the ore. This is the most important information that leads us to opening this mine, said Milos Bosnjakovic, director of Eastern Mining.
Bosnjaković explained that they no longer find professional staff in Vares, and that they come from surrounding places in BiH. They try to hire as many people from the local community as possible, which is why contractors are usually from Vares. One of them is Public Utility Company, which participates with 80 percent of Eastern Mining capacity in the last three years.
The company has obtained more than 50 different approvals and permits so far. Plans for 2020-2021. years include obtaining a permit for exploitation, completing feasibility studies, designing a major mining project, commencing preparatory work for the opening of mines and ore processing plants, and obtaining a permit to perform work under a mining project. The current plan is to open a mine and start production in 2022.
Based on the results of the preliminary study for the start-up of the mine and the ore processing, it is expected that there will be a minimum of 500 employees. The new plant should process 800,000 tonnes of ore per year and produce three types of concentrates that will be sent for further processing outside BiH.