NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
A Kenya-based firm says its titanium
exports declined in the first quarter of 2019 due to depletion
of mineral resources, an industry executive said on Monday.
Simon Wall, general manager of external affairs at Base Titanium
which operates the Kwale Mineral Sands project, told journalists
in Nairobi that ilmenite exports, which contains titanium oxide
declined to 81,339 tons in the first quarter of 2019 compared to
140,665 tons in the first quarter of 2018.
"Our focus for the first quarter continued to be maximizing
mineral recoveries under a high tonnage, low grade regime," Wall
Base Titanium, which is a subsidiary of Australian mining
giant Bases Resources said that it pays a royalty fee of 2.5
percent of all sales to the government.
He noted that currently the bulk of its production is
exported for value addition abroad mainly to China and the
Wall added that constraints on the global supply of sulphate
ilmenite continued in the first quarter of 2019 as the supply
from two major ilmenite producing countries India and Vietnam
have declined sharply.
He observed that most ilmenite is used in the manufacture of
pigment for paint for use in sectors such as housing and
In the first three months of 2019, Base Titanium said that it
also exported 14,593 tons of rutile which contains titanium
oxide, down from 25,526 tons in a similar period last year.
Wall added that the firm also exported 7,260 tons of Zircon
in the first quarter of 2019 compared to 9,884 tons for the
first three months of 2018.
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