Tanzania, Japan sign mineral exploration deal By ROSE ATHUMANI, 6th December 2010 @ 12:00, Total Comments: 0, Hits: 186 A MEMORANDUM of Understanding (MoU) signed between Japan Oil, Gas and Metal National Corporation (JOGMEC) and the Geological Survey of Tanzania (GST) will see the two institutions join efforts to explore and assess mineral resources in the country. The Commissioner for Minerals in the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, Dr Peter Kafumu, said in a speech on behalf of the Minister, Mr William Ngeleja, that the two institutions will use integrated modern techniques of remote sensing and ground geological investigations to carry out the exploration. Results of the survey are expected to bring an understanding of the mineral resources potential of the country which is expected to accelerate investment in the mineral sector, particularly from Japan, he explained. Before the survey commences, GST geoscientists will undergo capacity building in the discipline of application of modern techniques in mineral exploration, in remote sensing, satellite image analysis and Geographical Information System (GIS). Mr Ngeleja noted that a big portion of Tanzania had not been geologically surveyed; areas that are mostly in the Southern parts of the country, saying that there are a lot of mineral resources that have not yet been discovered. Preliminary studies in these areas have revealed abundant alluvial gold deposits in the Mbwemkuru River Basin, nickel occurrences in Nachingwea, uranium occurrences in Namtumbo district and various gemstones in the Mhuwesi River Basin, he explained. The Deputy Chief of Japanese Mission, Mr Shuichiro Kawaguchi, said the signing of the MoU was an initiative of the Minister for Energy and Minerals when he visited Japan last year. I expect that the technology transfer of the state-of-the-art on mineral resource explorations using satellite imaging that will be provided to Tanzanians geologists by JOGMEC will contribute to the economic growth and poverty reduction in the country, he said. Prof Abdul Mruma, Chief Executive of GST said four geoscientists had already received training on remote sensing by JOGMEC, saying such exercise is very useful for remote areas which cannot be easily accessed. I am delighted that we have now committed ourselves through the MoU, which will also see five more geologists receiving the training, which is a step forward in enhancing our institutions capacity, Prof Mruma noted.