The valuable jewel of Guinea’s Simandou Iron Ore deposit

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Africa has always been a land of natural resources deposited in the length and breadth of the African landscape. From Gold in Ghana, Diamond in Sierra Leone and Angola, Oil in Western and Northern Africa to iron, cobalt, copper, bauxite, the continent has a large quantity of these resources.

One of these resources is the presence of Iron Ore in the Simandou mine in Guinea – a large iron mine located in the Simandou mountain range of Southern Guinea. Its deposit is estimated at over 2.4 billion tonnes making it the largest iron ore deposit in the world. The area consists of the Northern and Southern deposit of the ore.

Despite environmental costs of developing the mine which experts say may require a 700km train line to get the ore to port, several big shots and multinational corporations across the world are already hovering around the mine to secure mining rights.

With China’s continued use of iron ore in infrastructure put at 1 billion tonnes in a year and a myriad of supply problems with Brazil, it is no surprise that the Chinese backed SMB Winning Consortium secured mining rights for the Northern part of the mine.

The Southern part of the mine is a joint ownership between Rio Tinto, Aluminium Corporation of China and Guinean Government.

With production set to begin in five years and mining 100 million tons a year, this would make Guinea the world’s third biggest exporter of Iron Ore. The implication of this deal is that Guinea stands to have a share in the stakes of either deals or any future deals leading to revenue generation, employment opportunities and a general boost to the economy.

Its earning potential is valued at $15.5 billion in royalties and other taxes. The reality of this huge earning potential is also credited to high prices of the iron ore which was put at $80/t in 2025 and $76/t in 2030 by World Bank forecast in April. 

Another reason is the high grade quality of Simandou Iron Ore which is over the industry yardstick of 62% iron content products.

Securing mining rights undoubtedly, comes with added incentives for the Guinean government and part of the agreed conditions would be to develop host communities by building infrastructures.

The Simandou Iron Ore deposit in Guinea represents a huge potential for Guinea’s foreign earnings and recognition in the global market for Iron Ore.

Africh Royale

Africh Royale

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