flag

Why invest in Yemen?

The GOY has paid a considerable attention to the mining sector which has seen a remarkable development over recent years. Investment motivation factors have been offered leading in turn to the creation of a favorable investment climate. Such factors may be summed up in the following:

1- The geographic location:

The Republic of Yemen is situated in the southern corner of the Arabian Peninsula to the south-west of Asia. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the north, the Arab Sea and the Gulf of Aden to the south, the Sultanate of Oman to the east and the Red Sea to the west. Yemen is characterized by its unique location to the south western side of the Arabian Peninsula where the Red Sea is connected to the Indian Ocean in the Gulf of Aden. Yemen enjoys a strategic location on Bab el-Mandeb Strait which is deemed to be a link between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden and one of the most important maritime trade corridors. Adding to the importance of Yemen's location are the islands spread out in the territorial waters along the Arab Sea and the Red Sea and the extended 2500 km long coastline.

2- The Geological Diversity:

Yemen's geology is characterized by the stunning topographic variation and of a wide variety of prospective the promising geological formations. The Proterozoic basement rocks of Yemen are overlain by sedimentary and volcanic platform cover that ranges in age from Precambrian to Recent. Yemen is blanketed by rocks aging as back as to the Precambrian Era until the modern age. Yemen, geologically speaking, forms is forming a part of the Arabian-Nubian Shield. This variation in the geological structure of Yemen has led to a diverse mineral wealth as there are multiple indications supporting the existence of economic reserves of gold, zinc, lead, silver, copper and nickel in Yemen. Explorations have also revealed the existence of considerable quantities of ores and industrial rocks in Yemen in good quality most of which is concentrated in populated areas having the necessary infrastructure and facilities to facilitate ease the investment process and minimize the costs. The exploration and appraisal efforts have led to locating spotting many types of sediments with commercial potential  of economic implications such as limestone, gypsum, Zeolite, Perlite, Pumice, saltpeter, feldspar, Quartz, Scoria, clay minerals, Silica sand, granite, Gabbro, marble, Basalt, Tuff and ignimbrite. This abundance of mineral resources in Yemen is one of the driving factors for mineral investment especially that there  are various signs that ancient Yemenis had exploited mineral resources such as iron, copper, silver, gold, marble and granite as there are many ancient with the discovery of many old mines in Yemen . As new mines are often found near old mines these ancient working are an important focus for new exploration. which constitute a practical evidence that the ancient mineralization sites still acquire immense importance.

3- The availability of an information base:

The availability of a good information base is one of the crucial factors to attract mining investments since the investment process calls for the availability of sufficient information on the proposed potential minerals. In Yemen, there is a good information base to enable the investor to take an informed decision especially with regard to geological maps as the information base contains the geological studies, results of previous mineral exploration the mining explorations, data of the various geological surveys such as geological, geophysical, hydrologic, topographic and mineral maps of different scales. The most important geological and mining information available in Yemen can be summarized as follows:

3-1 Maps

3-1-1 Topographic Maps:
• Two maps of a 1000,000:1 scale covering the entire Republic.
• 35 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 covering the governorates.
• 193 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the southern and eastern governorates.
• 240 maps on a scale of 50,000:1 covering the northern governorates.

3-1-2 Geological Maps:
• 35 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 covering the governorates of the Republic (Water Resources Project).
• 8 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 covering a number of governorates (the German project).
• 16 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the eastern governorates (the German Project).
• 17 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the southern and eastern governorates (the Russian Project).           
• 15 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the southern governorates (the Czech Project).   
• 30 maps  on a scale of 100,000:1 covering a number of governorates completed by a national cadre of YGSMRB.

3-1-3 Synthetic Map: One map on a scale of 1,250,000:1 for the Republic.

3-1-4 Hydrologic and Water Resources maps:
• Two maps on a scale of 1000:000:1 of the Republic.
• 8 maps on a scale of 500,000:1 of the governorates.
• 35 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 of the governorates.

3-1-5    Magnetic maps of Yemen:
• Two maps on a scale of 1000:000:1 of the Republic.
• 8 maps on a scale of 500,000:1 of the Republic excluding the islands.  
• 35 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 of the Republic excluding the islands.

3-1-6    Aerial Magnetic Surveys Maps:
• 4 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 of blocks (Sana'a, Amran, Wisab, Aden and Baihan)
• 4 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 of blocks (Sana'a, Amran, Wisab, Aden and Baihan).

3-1-7 Aerial Magnetic and Radiological surveys maps by fixed wing aircrafts
• 24 maps on a scale of 1,250,000:1 covering the areas of Wajid, Safer and Al-Waziayah.  
• 65 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the areas of Wajid, Safer and Al-Waziayah.

3-1-8    Magnetic and Radiological Survey maps by helicopter
• 4 maps on a scale of 1,250,000:1 covering the areas of (Eastern Mawiyah Al-Naqoub, Western Mawiyah Al-Naqoub, Tawilah, Baihan and Mihfed)
• 20 maps scaled 1, 50,000:1 covering the areas of Baihan and Mihfed.   
• 60 maps on a scale of 100,000:1 covering the areas of (Eastern Mawiyah Al-Naqoub, Western Mawiyah Al-Naqoub, Tawilah, Baihan and Mihfed)

3-1-9 Volcanic and Seismic Hazards Maps:
• Two maps on a scale of 1000,000:1 covering the entire Republic.
• 8 maps on a scale of 500,000:1 covering a number of governorates.
• 5 maps on a scale of 250,000:1 covering the areas of volcanic distribution.

3-1-10    Mineral Distribution Map: 2 maps on a scale of 1000,000:1 covering the Republic.
3-1-11    thematic maps: two maps 50,000:1 covering some governorates.

3-2  Magnetic and Radiological Survey Information:
• CDs including the digital information on the aerial geophysical surveys.
• Photographs on the aerial magnetic and radiological survey lines.
• Videos on the aerial magnetic and radiological survey.

3-3 Aerial Shots 60,000:1
3-4 Books and Periodicals:
• Geology and Science books: 1024 titles in Arabic and 2120 in English.
• Periodicals: 65 in Arabic and 117 in English

3-5 Reports and studies: 876 in English and 292 in Arabic

4- The availability of infrastructure:

Yemen possesses some of the required infrastructure to facilitate the process of investment of mineral ores and minimize the extraction costs. However, some parts remain in need of modernization and development such as upgrading the ports to involve berths  firths for exportation of mineral ores along with the establishment of railways to reduce the transportation costs. The main infrastructure facilities in Yemen are listed as follows:

4-1 Roads:
A network of roads connecting the different governorates and districts of the Republic is available along with a land road network with the neighboring Saudi Arabia and Oman. The total length of asphalted roads is 12,650 km in 2007 and increased by 8.8% in 2008 to reach approximately 13768 km (Statistical Yearbook 2008).

Efforts to improve the infrastructure persisted in 2009 making the total length of asphalted roads rise to 14,600 km in addition to 61,000 gravel roads. It is further predicted that the total length of asphalted roads will top 19,000 km by the end of 2010.

4-2 Telecommunication:
The telecommunication sector in Yemen is undergoing major developments in a rapid and consecutive pace in line with the massive global developments taking place in the telecommunication and IT domains.

Yemen has a modern local and international telecommunications network in major and minor cities. There are growing telecommunication services; in addition to the State-owned TeleYemen and Yemen Mobile, which operates with CDMA system, telecommunication companies, there are private GSM companies; MTN, SabaFon and Y.

4-3 Ports:
There are six international seaports in Yemen (in Aden, Al-Hodeida, Mukalla, Makha, Salif and Nashtoun) all of which are equipped to receive and handle commodities and ships and provide all the loading, unloading and storage services. There are three main seaports to export oil; Ras Issa, Shihr and Balhaf ports and a main seaport to export LNG (Balhaf Port) in addition to eight other local seaports (Saihout, Shihr, Shuqra, Socotra, Ras Al-A'ara, Khoukha, Luhayia and Midi ports). Yemen has also four land ports; Haradh, Al-Buqa'a, Habrout and Mahra.

4-4 Airports:
The functional airports in Yemen are 13, five of which are international airports (Sana'a, Aden, Taiz, Mukalla and Hodeida) and 8 are regional  local (Sayoun, Ataq, Ghaydah, Mareb, Al-Buqa'a, Al-Baidha, Sa'adah and Socotra). These airports provide their services to the airplanes with adequate levels of efficiency and safety. The State has worked, over the recent years, towards allocating financial funds to upgrade some airports and equip them with the navigation equipment that guarantee the safety of aviation.

5- The availability of the proper investment climate:

Yemen's geographic and population nature provides a favorable climate for launching multiple economic projects and investments across the Republic. Such tendency has been consolidated by Yemen's inviting investment climate for different investments in general and those in the mining sector in particular with the latest updating of the Investment Law and the Mines and Quarries Law, which came into effect in late  2010,  making them investment-friendly.