posted on Oct, 19 2010 @ 09:48 AM
Antofagasta plc (LSE: ANTO) is a Chilean business that operates in various sectors of the economy. It is one of the most important conglomerates of
Chile with equity participation in Antofagasta Minerals, the railroad from Antofagasta to Bolivia, Aguas Antofagasta in Chile, Tethian in Australia
and other investments in different parts from the world. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.
CODELCO (Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile or, in English, the National Copper Corporation of Chile) is the Chilean State owned copper mining
company formed in 1976 from the foreign owned copper companies that were nationalised in 1971. The headquarters are in Santiago and the seven-man
board of directors is appointed by the President of the Republic. It has the Minister of Mining as its president and six other members including the
Minister of Finance and one representative each from the Copper Workers Federation and the National Association of Copper Supervisors
Minera Escondida, which means 'hidden' in Spanish, is a mining company that operates two open pit copper mines in the Atacama Desert, 170 km
southeast of Antofagasta in northern Chile. It is currently the highest producing copper mine in the world. 2007 production of 1.483 million tons of
the metal was worth US$ 10.12 billion, mainly as metal in concentrate but some as cathode, and was 9.5% of world output and 26% of Chilean production,
according to the US Geological Survey's preliminary estimates of 2007 world mine output.
Major findings, 2010
In 2010, small team of Pentagon officials and American geologists discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan  ,
far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior
American government officials. According to other reports the total mineral riches of Afghanistan may be worth over three trillion US
dollars. "The previously unknown deposits — including huge veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium
— are so big and include so many minerals that are essential to modern industry that Afghanistan could eventually be transformed into one of the
most important mining centers in the world", the United States officials believe. The Ghazni Province may hold the world's largest lithium
The deposits were already described in the USGS report on Afghanistan issued in 2007. President Hamid Karzai remarked "Whereas Saudi Arabia is the
oil capital of the world, Afghanistan will be the lithium capital of the world."Deposits in the United States and Canada which need mining operations
similar to those necessary for the deposits in Afghanistan went out of production due to cheaper production from lithium containing brines.Afghanistan
invited 200 global companies for the development of its mines.