The Ministry of Mines & Petroleum has given exploration concessions to three companies to explore gold, metals and coal in Tigray, Amhara and Benishangul-Gumuz regional states. The companies are expected to invest 31 million Br and employ 46 people for the exploration work, according to Samuel Urkato, minister of Mines & Petroleum. A total of 56 companies have requested concessions to explore different minerals in Ethiopia, and those that have fulfilled the Ministry’s criteria are being awarded, according to Samuel. The Ministry also awarded mineral exploration concessions in the Amhara and Tigray regional states to six companies a week ago. Five of the companies will be engaged in the exploration of metals, while one will be exploring limestone. The mining industry has slumped in the past few years, with earnings from exports dropping to 130 million dollars last year from 600 million dollars seven years ago.
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