EIMC 2019

2nd Ethiopian International Mining Conference & Exhibition

Addis Ababa, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

25 – 26 November 2019

A snapshot of Ethiopia’s mineral resources
immense potential & untapped resources.

Gold: Ethiopia a golden history and a rich future

  • Gold mining dates back more than three millennia, Egyptian merchants came to trade gold from placer deposits. It estimated that the oldest mine in the world ( 6000 years) can be found in the Asosa Zone near the Sudanese border.
  • Independent experts believe that Western Ethiopia potentially has the largest gold deposits in Africa.
  • Gold deposits are to be found all over the country. Southern Ethiopia hosts the Sakaro gold mine (Oromia region) which has started production and Northern Ethiopia is witnessing an aggressive exploration programmes around the Tigray area.

Ethiopia poised to become a major gemstone producer


  • In 2017, Ethiopia exported 2,290 kgs of emeralds, their quality is high and similar to those found in Colombia. Protocols for traceability and identification protocols are currently being established to certify their origin and maximise their value.


  • Deposits were found in November 2016 in the Tigray Regional State. There has been limited geological work carried out in this area, therefore there are many possibilities for investors to bring these products to the international markets.


  • Opal mining takes place in the Wollo and Gonder zones, the Shewa Province and Afar in Northern Ethiopia. Ethiopia aims to challenge the Australian opal which has been dominant on the global market for over a century. Between 2000 – 2014, Ethiopia’s export of opals increased by 136.6%.


  • Ethiopia is the sixth biggest producer of Tantalum worldwide.
  • The Kenticha tantalite mine in the Oromia region in the Southern part of Ethiopia, contains significant deposits, with the potential to produce 9,000 tons of processed tantalum products over the next 15 years.

Industrial Minerals

  • Soda Ash mined at Lake Abiyata, in the rift valley, 200km south of Addis Ababa. The reserves at Lake Abiyata and the surrounding lakes exceeds 460 million tons of sodium carbonate. The plant produces 5,000 tons of soda ash per annum on a semi industrial scale.
  • Kaolin, quartz and feldspar are being mined from the Adola belt in Southern Ethiopia by a state-owned enterprise.
  • Silica sand is also produced and used on a local level. Ethiopian cement factories are using high quality limestone, clay, gypsum, and pumice as raw materials for production.
  • Locally mined construction materials such as sand, gravel, scoria and crushed stones and aggregates are used by the construction industry for buildings, roads and bridges.

Potash: access to Eritrea Port a game changer

  • Potash production has been concentrated on the central parts of the Danakil Depression, known as the Great Salt Plain of Dallol in the Northern part of Ethiopia. This area contains evaporite minerals which signify potash deposits.
  • The recent peace settlement between Ethiopia and Eritrea means that access to the port of Eritrea has facilitated cheaper access to market for potash producers, new interest from investors has been quickly registered.

Battery Minerals (Graphite & Lithium)

Ethiopia is perfectly placed to satisfy battery minerals demand

  • Ethiopia has graphite reserves of estimated 460,000 tons at the Moyale deposit, located on the border with Kenya. There are also several long belts of graphitic schists in the Adola region.
  • Ethiopia has great Lithium potential, notably in the salt brines of the marine strata of Southern Ethiopia and the Afar rift.