Australian Ambassador visits Blackstone Minerals nickel mine in Son La

Friday, Apr 15, 2022 12:31

Ambassador Robyn Mudie and Son La People's Committee Vice Chairman Dang Ngoc Hau, and delegation of General Department of Geology and Minerals, MONRE, visit Ban Phuc nickel mine.— Photo courtesy of Australia Embassy in Viet Nam

Australia’s Ambassador to Viet Nam Robyn Mudie has visited one of Australia's largest private investments in the country - Blackstone Minerals mining project in Son La Province.

The visit on Wednesday was an opportunity for the ambassador to witness the signing of a joint statement between Blackstone Minerals and Son La PPC, in which Blackstone Minerals commits to sustainable mining and a deepening of their investment in nickel mining projects in the province.

Blackstone Minerals has made significant investment into Viet Nam and the local communities in Son La Province, with a total investment worth US$12.6 million. Their projects in the province have created more than 300 new local jobs and provided vocational training for high skilled local workers and transferred technology and skills to Son La's local government geophysical division’s staff on modern methods in ground electromagnetic surveys.

The visit to Blackstone Minerals included a tour of the nickel mine in Ban Phuc, where Blackstone is applying Australia’s world leading modern mining and extractive technologies, and quality control processes with high safety and good environmental stewardship.

Australia has a deep and broad economic partnership with Viet Nam. In 2021, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh launched the Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy (EEES) to deepen two-way trade and investment ties and contribute to both countries’ COVID-19 economic recovery. One of the key pillars of this strategy is deepening cooperation on energy and minerals.

At COP26, the two nations committed to move towards net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, and released a joint statement on practical climate change action, including encouraging growth in low emissions technology.

Nickel is crucial to these innovative technologies, particularly to the production of batteries for the growing electric vehicle industry. — VNS

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