More jobs, accelerated bauxite production as BOSAI commissions US$115M kiln
President Dr. Irfaan Ali on Friday officially commissioned the BOSAI Minerals Group’s US$115M Kiln #15 and Maz Project at Linden, Region Ten which is expected to enhance the country’s bauxite production while adding some 400 local jobs.
The project which has been in the making for four years has seen the first new kiln being built since the 1970s.
The company has also added 42 100-pound mining trucks and nine 50 tonnes bulldozers together with other mobile devices, doubling the existing fleets.
There is also a planned expansion of ports for ship loading with the addition of two docks to the existing facilities and the setting up of a transshipment system equipped with four 10,000 tonnes newly built vessels.
Once in operation, the facility is expected to generate an output value of US$200 million per annum, equivalent to twice the current level.
Delivering remarks at the commissioning ceremony, President Ali said like the country, Linden is currently undergoing rapid and massive transformation.
The project, he said is a massive investment and the government is committed to ensuring its viability.
“I want to assure you that as we proceed on the journey of development we are not only embracing development from China but we are embracing development from all across the globe because Guyana is placed in a very good position in terms of where we are heading…and that is bringing tremendous results to us,” President Ali said.
Currently, BOSAI’s production is at 132,000 tonnes and the target set for this year is closer to 470,000.
With the new Kiln, President Ali said he hopes there will be an acceleration toward accomplishing the target.
“So we are holding you accountable for that target and further development…will be matched to your commitment. So as you fulfill your commitment, you are unlocking more development for the company,” he said.
Before oil, President Ali said over the years, Guyana’s traditional natural resources including bauxite, sustained and propelled the country and accounted for 90 percent of exports.
President Ali said bauxite production has been increasing in the past three years moving from 608 tonnes in 2020 to 705,000 tonnes last year, giving the country US$98.9m in export earnings which is 23.6 per cent higher than 2021.
“The glory days of bauxite are long gone and perhaps will never return but the industry still has many more years ahead of it. Our reserves can last us another 100 years. Those reserves are estimated to be worth about US$1B. Therefore there is no fear of us exhausting our reserves of bauxite anytime soon but we have to become more efficient. The industry still needs significant investment and modernization and this is a step in the right direction,” President Ali explained.
To do this, he said there is a need for a stable industrial climate.
“Unless there is a stable industrial climate the industry will be in turmoil. This will hurt its future and those who depend on it for their livelihood,” President Ali noted.
Meanwhile, in her remarks, Chinese Ambassador to Guyana, Guo Haiyan said the project is an indication of China’s confidence in deepening its cooperation with Guyana.
Presently, she said Guyana is facing a historical opportunity for economic development and social transformation.
“The Government of Guyana has proposed to build a resilient, diversified and sustainable economy not only to develop the oil and gas sector but also to promote other sectors such as mining….and has made great achievements,” the Chinese Ambassador said.
Highlighting that Guyana’s bauxite mining grew by 35 percent last year, Ambassador Haiyan said the country’s economic development is on the right track.
“Cooperation in the mining sector between China and Guyana is significant. Chinese mining companies have made a big amount of investment in Guyana…they have created over 2500 jobs for local people, increase the income and improve their livelihood,” she said while adding “As one of your best friends, China is far apart but our hearts are near. The two countries share the same ideas for people-centered development for the sake of people’s benefit”.
Meanwhile, Bosai General Manager, Eric Yu said in recent years, the global economy has been experiencing a broad based slowdown in relation to bauxite production with inflation higher than several decades, thereby affecting the sale revenue.
As such, he expressed confidence that Kiln #15 will bring about greater efficiency and lower production cost.