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With gold reserves of at least 53 tonnes, the mine is expected to have an economic value of $3.2 billion said Zeng Xiaogang, head of the region’s geology and mineral resources bureau.
The mine also holds 31,200 tonnes of copper, said Zeng.
Meisheng Group, who aided in the exploration of the mine, has invested nearly 150 million yuan in the project, which will be put into operation by the end of 2015.
Its annual gold production capacity is expected to reach three tonnes, or one billion yuan of production value every year, according to Zeng.
It is the second large gold mine discovered in the Ili Valley following one with gold reserves of 50 tonnes found in 1988.
According to the bureau, the mine is the largest such resource found in the area of Xinjiang’s western Tianshan Mountains.
The zone is within the Narat-Hongliu River metallogenic belt, together with gold mines in Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, indicating further ores are likely to be found in the belt.