India Times 
Thursday, June 17, 2010
KABUL: Initial discoveries of untapped mineral deposits in poverty-stricken Afghanistan are “worth up to three trillion dollars”, the country’s mines minister said Thursday.
The government tally came three days after US officials put their estimate of the value of the country’s reserves of iron, copper, cobalt and gold at at least one trillion dollars.
Mines Minister Wahidullah Shahrani said the US value of the Afghan resource wealth was a “very conservative estimate” and the Afghan evaluation was substantially more than that.
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“Although it has not been confirmed yet and is subject to more exploration and drilling, the idea is that it could be up to three trillion (dollars),” Shahrani said.
“The scientists always use a very conservative approach to make sure that information will not be biased,” he said.
Shahrani said it had been known for decades that the country has vast mineral wealth but the details of the deposits were only revealed in a survey recently conducted by the US Geological Survey.
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