Kosovo: Finnish and British geologists to start survey on mines and minerals

Prishtina, Sept 20, 2006 – In the UNMIK Pillar IV Press conference as well as in a separate interview with RTK last week, Nick Burcham, Member of the ICMM Governing Board, explained in detail the purpose of a geophysical survey that will start soon in Kosovo.
Two contractors, the Geological Survey of Finland and the British Geological Survey, selected by the Independent Commission for Mines and Minerals, will conduct the survey. The project will cost €1 million and is financed by the Kosovo Budget.

“The survey will be carried out using a specially equipped aircraft that will fly in a series of parallel east-west lines across Kosovo,” said Burcham, while explaining how the necessary data for the survey will be collected.

“The pilots will fly approximately 30 metres above the ground depending on the obstacles on the ground. The aircraft will probably manage to cover North-Eastern Kosovo until the end of the 2006 flying season, although much depends on weather conditions. This survey will then recommence in spring 2007 and is due to be completed by the end of 2007.”

“There are many benefits, but the main one is to gain greater knowledge about the possibilities to locate hidden ore deposits. These data will be available for international investors.”

Burcham said “There are a lot of potential investors who are interested in Kosovo. Until recently, given the war in 1999, the global mineral sector did not really register Kosovo’s potential because of the war. This is why this survey is done, to collect the necessary information and get it out there,” said Burcham.

According to Burcham, the interested investors are viewing the ongoing status talks as a potential risk, but once the status is resolved there will be much more companies willing to invest. This survey will create a database with the newest geophysical data of the whole Kosovo.

“This survey does not affect human beings, animals, plants, crops or telecommunications equipment. When you see the plane flying over you, you should think this is helping the economic development of Kosovo,” he said