Bolan Mining Enterprises

Bolan Mining Enterprises

Bolan Mining Enterprises (BME) is a joint venture between the Government of Balochistan (GoB) and Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL), each sharing a 50 percent working interest. BME was formed through a joint venture agreement signed on June 1, 1974 between the two for 30 years to mine, grind and market baryte deposits in Gunga near Khuzdar and other minerals in Balochistan. PPL was designated as operator under this agreement which was renewed in June 2004 for another three decades.

A barytes Mining Lease spanning 316 acres for exploitation & exploration of barytes in Gunga near Khuzdar, originally hosting proven reserves of 1.28 million tonnes, was granted to BME by GoB in 1974. The Mining Lease is valid up to 2033. Based on the recent drilling in the area, indicated reserves of over 69.2 million tonnes have been established.

BME operates three grinding mills having total production capacity of about 300,000 metric tonnes barytes annually in line with the specifications of the American Petroleum Institute. 

Over the years, BME has met nearly 90 percent of the barytes requirement of the oil and gas exploration and production industry in Pakistan. Besides PPL, the major customers of barytes are Oil and Gas Development Company Limited, Pakistan Oil Fields Limited, Mari Petroleum Company Limited, Scomi Oil tools (formerly known as KMC Oil tools), M-I SWACO (Pakistan) and Baker Hughes Incorporated. Majority of BME’s sales are propelled by exports, BME mainly exports barytes powder and lumps/ore to the international market, mainly covering Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and earning foreign exchange for the country.

BME has recently started sales of iron ore from Pachinkoh, Nokkundi on ex-works basis, with increase in production BME intends to start exports on FOB, Karachi basis.

In 2002, GoB granted a Mining Lease over an area of 13,660 acres in Dilband for iron ore exploration & exploitation to BME. Fine iron ore from Dilband was supplied to Pakistan Steel Mills during 2003 and 2004 under a sale/purchase agreement. However, the supply was discontinued due to low contents of iron (TFe) and high percentage of silica & alumina in the ore. BME carried out multiple research projects for upgradation of Dilband Iron Ore on Lab scale. The upgraded ore test results, however, showed no significant improvement. Currently, BME is working on the alternate usage of Dilband Iron Ore (DIO) to utilize low grade iron. Accordingly, preparation of a Feasibility Study for conclusive results of DIO and the way forward plan is initiated to produce Pig Iron from DIO. In this regard, International Tender was floated to undertake the feasibility study. Bids received are in evaluation process, accordingly a contract will be awarded to successful bidder following PPRA procedures.

BME also holds two Mining Leases, valid until March 2027 in the northwest of Nokkundi for mining of iron ore. However, mining activities were held up due to prolonged litigation on mining Lease. Following the Balochistan High Court's decision in favour of BME at ML(5) in October 2018, early mining activities were initiated for iron ore through a local firm/ contractor. Commercial sales of iron ore lumps started in June, 2020. Further, bulk scale bench mining is also in progress through contractor including sales of iron ore is being initiated.

Moreover, BME has established iron ore crushing facility at project site as part of value addition. BME has also initiated phase-wise exploration activities for identifying new iron ore prospects in the litigation free area in ML (4). In Phase-I, 640 meters exploratory drilling was done during 2017-2018. In Phase-II, further geophysical investigations is planned during 2021-22. Recently, BME has successfully completed 2000 meters drilling at ML(5) for Confirmatory / Geotechnical investigations of shallow bearing iron ore horizons. Further, Confirmatory / Geotechnical investigations / exploratory drilling of 6000 meters of deep bearing iron ore horizons are planned during 2021-2022 to finalize the mine planning & designing followed by finalization of Feasibility study of Nokkundi Iron Ore Project. BME has also initiated the tendering process to install iron ore processing plant, in this regard tender has been published for 150TPH iron ore processing capacity to be installed at Nokkundi iron ore Project.

An exploration license for lead and zinc, covering an area of 93,507.63 acres, west of Khuzdar was granted to BME in March 2008. A contract was awarded to renowned consultant DMT consulting GmbH, Germany to prepare a bankable feasibility report for exploration of Baryte-Lead-zinc deposit. Under the supervision of DMT (project consultant), initially 2,100 meters of exploratory diamond core drilling was carried out which established the presence of lead & zinc as well as baryte in the leased area. To this end, about 1,018 drill core samples were prepared and analyzed chemically for ascertaining the ores' quality. Based on the positive findings, DMT further recommended approximately 10,000 meters (±10%) resource drilling at 27 different locations for 'Resource Evaluation’ based on "Joint Ore Resource Committee's review" (JORC). Subsequently, a contract was awarded to Interdrill Pty Limited, Australia for drilling. Drilling data was compiled and approximate 3,000 drill core samples were analyzed chemically for ascertaining the ores' quality. Geotechnical studies on drill core samples were also undertaken / analyzed for determination of slope stability of opencast mine based on the sound principles and good understanding of best practices of rock engineering.

Based on the evaluation, a feasibility report has been submitted by DMT, establishing the economic viability of the deposit. Accordingly, BME has been granted Mining Lease (ML) for Lead-Zinc. Currently, International bidding has been initiated for hiring of Project Management Consultancy services for Barite-Lead-Zinc (BLZ) Project.  Subsequently, initiation of tendering for EPCC contract involving procurement, installation & commissioning of processing facilities and mine development as per best industry norms will be undertaken. Commercial production is expected to commence in 2024-25.


 Barytes: 1967; Iron ore (Nokkundi): 1970; Iron ore (Dilband): 1997; Lead & Zinc

in west of Khuzdar: 2019

Indicated Reserves*

Barytes (including Lead & Zinc): 69.2 million tonnes; Iron ore (Nokkundi): 45 million tonnes; Iron ore (Dilband): 145 million tonnes

PPL Working Interest

 50 percent

Daily Average Production**

 Barytes: Mining:  793 tonnes

              Grinding: 143 tonnes

 Iron Ore: Mining: 25  tonnes

*Indicated resource is the resource for evaluating economic mineral tonnage, grade and mineral content that can be estimated with a reasonable level of confidence

**Daily production figures are averaged for 9 months from July 2021 to March 2022




Diamond Core drilling for BLZ Project at Khuzdar Bolan Mining Enterprises Balochistan