The Vietnam Chemical Corporation (VCC) started an exploration project for potassium-containing salt in Noongboc district, Laos’s central Khammouane province, on November 15.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Thoongphat Inthavong, Director of the Department of Mining and Geology of the Lao Ministry of Industry and Handicrafts, praised the VCC’s efforts and the assistance given by the Vietnamese and Lao Governments and relevant agencies, as well as local authorities and people in helping implement the potassium salt exploration project on schedule. The project was put into operation on the occasion of Laos’ s 30th National Day (Dec. 2), the 85th birthday of President Kaysone Phomvihane (December 13) and at a time when the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party is preparing for its 8th national congress, he said.
He said the exploration is an important project in the framework of the Laos-Vietnam agreement on economic, cultural, scientific and technical co-operation, which contributes to the implementation of the agreement between the Lao Ministry of Industry and Handicrafts and the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry for the 2002-2005 period.
Many Vietnamese businesses have invested in Khammouane province, including the Corporation for Economic Co-operation (COECCO) with an investment project in gypsum exploitation.
The $3.4 million potassium salt exploration project is carried out under a co-operative agreement signed between the Lao Government and the VCC in December 2004 with 100% of investment from the VCC. In the first phase, which will last three years, the project will be carried out on a 10 square kilometres area to survey and evaluate the reserve and quality of mineral salt, and collect geological and climate data for expanded exploitation and processing of mineral salt in the future.