President Ashraf Ghani ordered the termination of two major mining contracts – for Balkhab copper deposit in Sar-e-Pul province and for a gold deposit in Badakshan -- during a High Economic Council meeting last week.
The order was confirmed by Abdul Qadir Mutfi, a spokesman for the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum.
“A few days ago the contracts were terminated,” Mutfi said. “The reasons were that the companies could not fulfill the commitments they made during the bidding process. The main issue was financial commitment; therefore, the High Economic Council terminated the contracts.”
The contracts were awarded to Afghan and foreign companies in October 2018.
On October 5, 2018, the Afghan Gold and Mineral Company was awarded mining rights to the Balkhab copper mine in Sar-e-Pul province, and the Turkish-Afghan Mining Company won rights to Badakhshan’s gold deposit.
(Note: This story has been corrected. “October 2016” has been changed to “October 2018.”)