Kaskor Joint Stock Company

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Last Updated: October 29, 2009
Other Name: Formerly known as the Prikaspiyskiy Mining and Metallurgy Combine (MMC)
Location: Aktau (formerly Shevchenko)
Subordinate To: N/A
Size: In 1994, total uranium resources of mines run by Kaskor were estimated at 64,400 metric tons of uranium.
Facility Status: Closed due to bankruptcy in mid 1990s

Structure: Mining Complex: Open pit mining of uranium phosphate ore deposits at Melovoye and Tomyak. Operations were suspended in February 1994. [1] Chemical Complex: A chemical-hydrometallurgical plant produced uranium concentrate in the form of uranium oxide (U3O8), scandium oxide, scandium fluoride, and other rare earth elements for export. [2] The complex also included sulfuric acid and nitric fertilizer production facilities. [3] The fertilizer plant was transferred to MAEK in 1994. [4] Machine Building Complex (Remzavod): Manufacturing of equipment for the oil, mining, chemical and agricultural industries. Research Laboratory Dikfa Joint Stock Company: Toothpaste manufacturer. [5]

Kaskor was formerly known as the Prikaspiyskiy Mining and Metallurgy Combine (MMC). The Prikaspiyskiy MMC, a large-scale ore mining and processing enterprise, was established in 1959 to exploit uranium-phosphate deposits on the Mangyshlak Peninsula. [6] The discovery of these deposits led to the founding of the city of Aktau and the construction of the Mangyshlak Atomic Energy Combine (MAEK) to supply desalinated water and electricity to the Prikaspiyskiy MMC. [7] By the end of the 1960s, the Prikaspiyskiy MMC was one of the major producers of uranium in Kazakhstan and, along with the Navoi Mining and Metallurgy Combine in Uzbekistan and the Tselinnyy Mining and Chemical Combine, was at the core of the Soviet uranium production industry. In 1994, total uranium resources of mines run by Kaskor were estimated at 64,400 metric tons (t) of uranium. [8] The complex is reported to have had an annual capacity in excess of three million pounds of U3O8. [9] After Kazakhstani independence, the Combine was privatized and became a state holding company under the name Kaskor, with 51 percent of its stock held by the government. [10] Uranium production declined in the early 1990s, from 2.6 million pounds of U3O8 in 1990 to 832,000 pounds in 1993. [11] Mining and milling operations were suspended as of February 1994. A Kazakhstani official explained that open-pit extraction, an expensive technique, had made Kaskor uranium prices non-competitive on the market. [12] The Kaskor Chemical Complex, a producer of fertilizer from the Soviet era, was temporarily placed under the control of MAEK in 1994. [13]

Sources:
[1] "In Steppe with Kazakhstan," Nukem, 1995, p. 12.
[2] "National Joint-Stock Company of Atomic Energy and Industry 'KATEP,'" Marketing brochure, 1994, p. 6.
[3] Vitaliy Ponomarev, "The Nuclear Industry in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan," Central Asia Monitor, No. 2, 1993, p. 33.
[4] Olga Kovalenko, "Peretyagivaniyem kanata, a ne resheniyem ekonomicheskikh problem zanimayutsya v Aktau," Kazakhstanskaya pravda, No. 217 (22174), p. 1, 4 October 1996.
[5] BISNIS Trip Report to Aktau, 18-19 October 1999, BISNIS, www.bisnis.doc.gov.
[6] Vitaliy Ponomarev, "The Nuclear Industry in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan," Central Asia Monitor, No. 2, 1993, pp. 32-34.
[7] "Kaskor Suspends Production at Shevchenko Site," Nuexco Review, February 1994, p. 11.
[8] William C. Potter and Elizabeth Skinner, interview with Vladimir S. Shkolnik, Director of the Atomic Energy Agency, Republic of Kazakhstan (AEA RK) 16 April 1994.
[9] "Eurasia", Nuexco Review, 1992, p. 60.
[10] William C. Potter and Elizabeth Skinner, interview with Vladimir S. Shkolnik, Director of the Atomic Energy Agency, Republic of Kazakhstan (AEA RK) 16 April 1994.
[11] Paul Carroll, "The Reconstruction of the Uranium Industry in Kazakhstan," Presentation at the Uranium Institute's Twenty Second Annual International Symposium 1997, Uranium Institute, www.uilondon.org.
[12] William C. Potter and Elizabeth Skinner, interview with Vladimir S. Shkolnik, Director of the Atomic Energy Agency, Republic of Kazakhstan (AEA RK) 16 April 1994.
[13] Olga Kovalenko, "Peretyagivaniyem kanata, a ne resheniyem ekonomicheskikh problem zanimayutsya v Aktau," Kazakhstanskaya pravda, No. 217 (22174), 4 October 1996, p. 1.

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