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  • Apr 7th, 2009
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Pakistan is the only country for having the worlds largest salt mines with proven reserves of about 10 billion ton in three mines including more than 6.687 billion ton only in the Khewra rocky salt mine, located in the area of district Jhelum. Other two salt mines are Warcha and Kalabagh.

The main habitat of salt lies there in the Punjab province at Khewra in Tehsil Pind Dadan Khan, District Jhelum. The salt found here at Khewra salt mine is the best, finest and in natural state in the world. Salt was first worked out in Khewra which is at about 175 km and the history tells that long before the Alexander the great invaded the area, Salt was being mined at Khewra at that time.

At present the Khewra salt mine is being managed by Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC). According to availability of data with PMDC, it is said that still large quantities of salt exist in its unexplored areas of the mines. The annual production of salt at Khewra is about 300,000 tonnes according to the data.

According to the available data there is still enough salt to last about 400 years to come in the existing mines. These reports reveal that about 534, 512 tonnes of fine rock Salt had been extracted up to 1850 and till March 1923 the production obtained from Khewra salt mine was 49,71,420 tonnes.

An agreement was signed with Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) of England established its Soda Ash Plant at Khewra in 1938. The ICI predominately is based on the salt deposits obtained from the mine. The ICI industries have signed a lifetime agreement with PMDC for the mining of salt from Khewra.

Not only we meet our salt requirements from the Khewra salt mine, but Pakistan also exports salt to India to the tune of 10 thousand to 18 thousand tonnes annually. It is also a source of earning foreign exchange for the government.

Khewra salt mine has 1290 meters long tunnels. The mine is an open challenge to an adventurous spirit. It has 17 levels and there are 50 feet of rock salt between each level in which there are very large chambers, made when Salt was extracted. It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan is a land of rich natural wealth including precious metals and fluids beneath it like iron, gold, silver, bronze, gas, gypsum and rubies.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2009

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