CSA Global Director of Exploration, Dr Neal Reynolds will present on “Realising Iran’s Mineral Potential through Excellence in Exploration and Mining” at the 2nd Iran Mines and Mining Industries Summit (IMIS) between 10-11 December 2016 at the IRIB International Conference Center in Tehran, Iran.
Mining in Iran has an ancient history and underpinned trade and development of the great civilisations of the Persian region. Following the recognition of the hydrocarbon potential of Iran in the early 20th Century, the mining industry became the poor cousin of the oil industry, Investment in mining was impeded by reduced access to international funds following the 1979 revolution and was further the imposition of international sanctions. Although Iran has developed a significant mineral sector and has made advances towards self-sufficiency, the mining industry is relatively underdeveloped and undercapitalised considering the immense mineral potential of the country.
Realising Iran’s mineral potential and maximising the economic benefit requires high-risk investment in exploration and development, bringing excellence and technology to discovery of new mineral deposits and optimising the value of existing projects that have been starved of capital. Global experience shows that private-sector risk investment is most efficient; the necessary ingredients include mineral endowment, investment incentives, and effective regulation.
Iran’s high mineral endowment is primarily related to its position in the Tethyan mineral belt, and Iran hosts globally significant resources of Zn-Pb, Cu, Au and Fe as well as Mn, Cr, and Al. Iran’s Mining Act and regulations together with incentives for foreign investment provide generally favourable settings for mining industry investment; however, this has been held back by sanctions.
As sanctions are lifted, foreign investment and growth in the mineral sector will follow. Iran can maximise the return from this investment through a focus on excellence and technology in exploration, mining, and project optimisation. Geology, exploration and resource estimation are the foundation on which the industry is built and where excellence and technology provide maximum return. Excellence and technology in geology and exploration leads to effectiveness in discovery and resource definition drilling and, through resource estimation and geometallurgical modelling, provides the foundation for feasibility studies. Excellence and technology in data acquisition, data management and data processing underpins exploration success and the ability to report exploration results and mineral resources in accordance with international best practice such as the JORC Code. Excellence, technology and innovation will provide the foundation for the investment that will unlock Iran’s immense mineral potential and can also drive the growth of a local mining equipment, technology and services sector.
Dr Neal Reynolds – Director Explorations
PhD. , BSc, FAusIMM, MAIG, FSEG
Dr Neal Reynolds is a geologist with almost 30 years’ experience in the mineral exploration industry from project generation to advanced project stage, encompassing targeting studies, project management, project due diligence, audit and optimisation, and expert reporting. Neal has worked on projects globally, with extensive experience in Asia, Africa, and Australia, and is particularly sought after for his specialist expertise in the metallogeny and mining industry in Southeast Asia. He has broad commodity experience and expertise in sediment-hosted and intrusive-related base metals and gold systems. He specialises in integrated mineral systems targeting at district to deposit scale, including the effective application of sedimentary geology, lithostratigraphy, structural geology, and alteration studies.