- AREVA has had a presence in Niger for 40 years and is the primary shareholder in SOMAIR and COMINAK, companies that manage 2 mines in the Arlit region. At the same time, the group is preparing to launch production at the Imouraren deposit.
- AREVA's 2,400 employees are 98% Nigerien
Niger has significant uranium resources. Uranium ore is the country’s leading export product (218 million euros in 2007), representing 5% of GDP and generating more than 5% of Nigerien tax revenue.
In the long term, Imouraren is set to become the largest open-pit uranium mine in Africa and the second largest in the world. Production is expected to last more than 35 years and will reach 5,000 metric tons per year, doubling Niger’s current production and elevating the country to second place among world uranium producers.
AREVA's nuclear power activities in Niger
Niger's uranium potential is currently being developed by SOMAIR and COMINAK, 2 companies formed under Nigerien law for which AREVA is the primary shareholder and operator. SOMAIR and COMINAK mine deposits within a 360 square kilometre concession in the Arlit region, which is located more than 1,200 kilometers from the capital, Niamey, in northeast Niger. Each mine has its own ore treatment plant. Since their creation in the 1960s, the 2 mining companies have extracted more than 100,000 metric tons of uranium.
In 2006, the Agebout and Afouday permits—which include the Imouraren deposit discovered 40 years earlier by the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC)—were granted to AREVA. The group immediately initiated intense development efforts to better define the deposit’s characteristics and determine mining feasibility.
In January 2009, the group obtained a mining permit for the Imouraren deposit. The agreement provides for a capital split of 66.65% for AREVA and 33.35% for the State of Niger in the company created to mine the deposit. In December 2009, AREVA and KEPCO teamed up on Imouraren’s development with an agreement that will allow KEPCO to indirectly hold a 10% share in the operating company.
Four other exploration permits (Tagait 1, 2 and 3 and Zéline 3) were granted to AREVA in April 2007.
Immeuble Sonara I
Place Rond Point Kennedy
BP 11 858 Niamey (Niger)
Phone : +227 20 75 25 11 / 20 72 39 27
Fax : +227 20 75 24 83