Extractive industries

Minerals and mineral products

How a Beloved Gemstone Became a Symbol of Environmental Tragedy in Myanmar

The jade gemstones that generate billions of dollars a year in Myanmar — the world’s biggest exporter of the stone — are beloved in China, where they can sell for more than gold. But they are a symbol of tragedy and suffering for the people who ...

EMILY FISHBEIN AND AUNG MYAT LAMUNG; Additional reporting by Jaw Tu Hkawng.

A Deadly Gamble: Myanmar’s Jade Industry

The tragedy was all too familiar in Myanmar’s infamous northern jade mining town of Hpakant: In the early hours of the morning, hundreds of jade pickers teetered on the edge of unstable mountains to scavenge the loose debris dumped by trucks. They are convinced finding ...

Nicholas Muller

Corruption, Weak Rule of Law Cited as Myanmar Probes Latest Jade Disaster

A team appointed by the Myanmar government to probe a massive landslide at a jade mine in northern Myanmar has begun its investigation into the deadly accident that killed at least 172 people, a Kachin state official said Tuesday. Heavy rains caused piles of loose dirt ...

Reported by Aung Theinkha and Zarni Tun for RFA’s Myanmar Service and by Jia Ao for RFA’s Mandarin Service. Translated by Nandar Chann. Written in English by Roseanne Gerin.

Dreams Of Myanmar's Jade Miners Buried By Disaster

Five Yay Ma Hsay – or ‘unwashed’ as the jade miners of northern Myanmar are known – arrived early Thursday at the pit to scrape out a living on a scraggy hillside, lured by the prospect of finding a stone that could transform their lives.  But ...

AFP

Hunting for particles of gold in the jungles of Southeast Asia

Walking across the world, you encounter human beings engaged in various repetitive behaviors. Raising babies. Fixing machines. Boiling tea. Planting crops. Posting videos on TikTok. Looking for gold. Our species’ pervasive quest for gold is ancient and tireless. Along my 11,000-mile trail out of Africa, I have ...

PAUL SALOPEK

Chifeng Jilong to Restart Gold Production at Sepon Mine in Laos

China’s Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Co has said it will begin processing gold ore from its mine in Sepon, Laos, after a six-year hiatus. According to a report by Reuters, the restart of gold production at the mine is due to gold prices hitting a seven-year ...

Latsamy Phonevilay

Cambodia considers licensing mining at four coal sites

The Cambodian Ministry of Mines and Energy is set to review applications soon for rights to four coal mining concession areas it opened late in March in the northern region of the country, the Phnom Penh Post reported. The ministry said in a press release that interested national ...

Ministry to give mining rights for four coal sites

The Ministry of Mines and Energy is set to review applications soon for rights to four coal mining concession areas – totalling 794sq km – it opened late in March in the Kingdom’s north. “Interested national and international companies can apply for a mining licence at ...

Thou Vireak

Three Arrested in Laos for Illegally Mining Gold on Land Leased by Chinese Company

Authorities in Laos’ Luang Prabang province arrested three rural villagers for trespassing after they tried to mine gold on land granted in a concession to a Chinese company, RFA has learned. The villagers, from Phapon village in Luang Prabang’s Pak Ou district, were initially detained by ...

RFA’s Lao Service

Myanmar authorities stop 17 illegal gold mines along Ayeyarwady River

U Kyaw Myint Than, director of the Directorate of Water Resources and Improvement of River System said the illegal gold mines were discovered in Thabeikkyin township during an inspection on the area on Monday. The general administration department, police force and the officials from the Ministry ...

Kyaw Ko Ko

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