ICL, Allana partner to develop potash mine


Allana Potash signed a partnership agreement with Israeli Chemicals Limited (ICL) Africa on Tuesday March 18 to mine potash for the production of fertilizer. According to the agreement ICL will provide the financing and marketing muscle to make possible the development of Allana’s Danakhil potash deposit. According to reports, the feasibility study for the region shows that it can produce about one million tons of potash annually.
During the signing agreement the partnership is praised as it is considered to be a milestone for Ethiopia because it will  help the country introduce new fertilizer that the nation plans to use to improve its agricultural production. Fertilizer use in Ethiopia was previously limited to UREA and DAP for over forty years.
The Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) in collaboration with the Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) has studied the nutrient deficiencies of soil in over 150 woredas and proved that over 50 percent of these areas need potassium fertilizer to improve productivity.
ICL, which has potash mines in Israel, Spain and Britain, sold over 5 million tons of potash in 2013.
“The Danakhil mine will provide potash for Ethiopia and Africa, and combined with ICL’s agronomics fertilization know-how will enable local farmers to increase agricultural output and food for the region. The location of the Danakhil mine will provide us with fast and easy access to the Indian Ocean, which will enable us to even better serve our customers in India and South East Asia,” ICL Chief Executive Stefan Borgas reportedly has said.
Ethiopia has the third largest potassium deposit in the world next to Russia and Canada. The partnership project, which will have duration of two and a half years, has already invested 25 million USD of its 642 million USD total investment.
The signing ceremony was held at the Elilly International Hotel in the presence of State Minister of Agriculture Prof. Tekalign Mamo, Canadian Ambassador to Ethiopia David Usher, General Manager of ICL Africa, Yoram Cohen as well as Allana Potash Senior Vice President Najib Aba Biya, among others.