Aluminum   $ 2.1505 kg        |         Cobalt   $ 33.420 kg        |         Copper   $ 8.2940 kg        |         Gallium   $ 222.80 kg        |         Gold   $ 61736.51 kg        |         Indium   $ 284.50 kg        |         Iridium   $ 144678.36 kg        |         Iron Ore   $ 0.1083 kg        |         Lead   $ 2.1718 kg        |         Lithium   $ 29.821 kg        |         Molybdenum   $ 58.750 kg        |         Neodymium   $ 82.608 kg        |         Nickel   $ 20.616 kg        |         Palladium   $ 40303.53 kg        |         Platinum   $ 30972.89 kg        |         Rhodium   $ 131818.06 kg        |         Ruthenium   $ 14950.10 kg        |         Silver   $ 778.87 kg        |         Steel Rebar   $ 0.5063 kg        |         Tellurium   $ 73.354 kg        |         Tin   $ 25.497 kg        |         Uranium   $ 128.42 kg        |         Zinc   $ 2.3825 kg        |         
Image source: https://pixelied.com/

True to its commitment to supporting Kazakhstan’s mineral sector, MINEX Forum actively collaborates with like-minded events and organisations. As we approach a relaxing weekend, we’ve prepared an informative long read to offer key insights into the evolving landscape of Kazakhstan’s mining and critical raw materials sectors.


On 22 February our partners at the Kazakhstan Chamber of Mines (established March 2023) organised their first international conference under the theme “Increasing Investment Attractiveness in Kazakhstan’s Mining Industry”.

This Astana-based event convened expert panels featuring senior Kazakhstan officials, Senate Parliament representatives, and Ambassadors from the UK, USA, and Canada, alongside national/international mining companies, industry NGOs, and CRISCO/PONEN members.

Breakout sessions addressed critical issues:

Legal Framework Impacting Investment: Discussions centred on proposed changes to mineral export licensing, in-country value programs, streamlining exploration territory returns, groundwater deposit regulations, and environmental approval processes.

Environmental and Subsoil Use Legislation: Amendments to the Subsoil Code (including the Auction Program), revisions to the Environmental Code for faster subsoil use approvals, and the transition to KAZRC were key topics.

Due to the limited venue capacity, not everyone could attend the conference. The press office of the MINEX Forum’s secretariat prepared a summary of the keynote and side-line interviews.

The Kazakhstan Chamber of Mines is planning to publish the conference materials in due course. For details, please visit www.chamberofmines.kz.

Introduction by Tim Barry – Advisory Board Member, Kazakhstan Chamber of Mines

Tim Barry, an Advisory Board Member of the Kazakhstan Chamber of Mines and CEO of Arras Minerals, highlighted the robust potential of Kazakhstan’s mining industry, attributing its health to the country’s excellent geology, supportive government policies, and community backing. Barry emphasized the critical role of these factors in fostering a mining sector that adheres to best practices. Kazakhstan, known for its rich mineral resources, has been recognized for its favourable geological conditions, which are essential for a thriving mining industry. Barry pointed out that the government’s efforts to enact sensible laws have further bolstered the industry’s prospects, creating a conducive environment for mining operations. The community’s support for mining activities has also played a significant role in the sector’s development.

The formation of the Chamber of Mines, according to Barry, was a strategic move to maintain the industry’s momentum and address potential challenges. The Chamber aims to provide a platform for feedback from all industry aspects, ensuring that the mining sector continues to benefit from a collaborative approach. Barry’s insights underscore the importance of a holistic approach to sustaining the mining industry’s growth, highlighting the synergy between geology, governance, community support, and industry practices. With these elements in place, Kazakhstan’s mining sector is well-positioned for continued success and contribution to the global mining landscape.

Opening speech by Kanat Sharlapayev – Minister of Industry and Construction of the Republic of Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan’s mining industry has seen an influx of over $200 billion in investments over the past decade, accounting for 60 per cent of the total investments in the country’s economy. This significant financial commitment underscores the sector’s attractiveness and its pivotal role in Kazakhstan’s economic development.

Kanat Sharlapayev, the Minister of Industry and Construction, highlighted the vast potential awaiting investors, with 8,000 deposits identified across the nation. More than 100 of these deposits are currently approved for sale, signalling a wealth of opportunities for exploration and development.
The country has opened up 1.5 million square kilometres for geological research, marking a significant step towards harnessing Kazakhstan’s mineral wealth. This expansion is part of a broader strategy to attract investment by simplifying legislation and procedures related to the mining sector.

In a significant move towards modernizing its mining sector, Kazakhstan has introduced the KAZRC standard, aligning with internationally recognized standards for geological discoveries. Minister of Industry and Construction, Kanat Sharlapayev, announced this development, emphasizing the importance of speaking a common language with investors to ensure transparency and reliability in reporting standards. The introduction of the KAZRC standard is part of Kazakhstan’s broader efforts to attract investment and enhance the efficiency of its mining industry. Sharlapayev highlighted the country’s commitment to digitization, noting the successful transition to online processes for obtaining exploration licenses. Since October 2023, the ministry has awarded 273 exploration licenses through its digital platform, demonstrating a significant step towards streamlining operations and making it easier for investors to navigate the Kazakh mining environment.

The minister also pointed out the modest yet significant achievements in the auction process, where international mining giants like Rio Tinto and Fortescue competed for exploration rights in Kazakhstan. This interest from major global players, along with investments from junior miners backed by these corporations, underscores the growing confidence in Kazakhstan’s mining sector.
Sharlapayev further shared impressive investment trends, revealing that private exploration companies invested over $200 million in geological exploration in Kazakhstan in 2023 alone. Sharlapayev reiterated that prior to 2023 it took five years to attract the same amount of private investment in mineral exploration. This surge in investment is a testament to the effectiveness of the new mining code introduced in 2018 and the country’s efforts to attract fresh capital into its geology sector.

Addressing the critical importance of reliable supplies of critical materials, the minister assured that Kazakhstan could offer both the materials and the reliability needed by global markets. The country’s mining sector, leveraging its rich natural resources, contributes about 18 to 20 percent of the global aerospace titanium, holds a 30 percent share in the world’s beryllium production, and produces over 10 percent of the global tantalum market. Additionally, Kazakhstan is recognized as one of the top ten copper producers worldwide. The evolution of scientific methods and technological tools in the field of geology holds promise for the discovery of untapped mineral resources within the country. This initiative reflects Kazakhstan’s commitment to expanding its mining sector and strengthening its position in the global market for critical minerals and other valuable resources.
In conclusion, Sharlapayev reiterated Kazakhstan’s long history and expertise in mining, dating back to the mid-20th century, and highlighted the country’s human capital as a key strength in developing its resources. He expressed gratitude to the international community for their interest and investment in Kazakhstan, underscoring the country’s commitment to becoming a leading player in the global mining industry.

Sideline interview with HE Daniel Rosenblum – USA Ambassador in Kazakhstan

U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan, Daniel N. Rosenblum, has articulated the significant strides Kazakhstan is making in enhancing its investment climate, particularly within the mining sector. The Ambassador’s remarks came during a sideline interview, where he conveyed a message of progress to American businesses.

Ambassador Rosenblum, who was sworn in on October 28, 2022, has a rich background in foreign service, including a tenure as the U.S. Ambassador to Uzbekistan and various roles within the State Department’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs. His insights into Kazakhstan’s mining industry are informed by his extensive experience in the region.

During his visit to the United States in December 2023, Ambassador Rosenblum engaged with numerous mining companies based in Arizona, a leading mining region in the U.S. He emphasized the lucrative opportunities present in Kazakhstan and the mutual benefits that such investments would bring to both countries. The Ambassador underscored the critical nature of minerals, especially those used in renewable energy technologies like batteries, and the strategic importance they hold for the future of both Kazakhstan and the United States.