Department of Mineral Resources

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Marine Mineral Resources in Thailand

07 Jan 2021

Activities on marine mineral resources in Thailand have begun after the establishment of The Royal Department of Mines and Geology or Department of Mineral Resources at the present. In 1901, tin mining encroached on the coastal for 400 meters. In 1907, captain Edward Thomas Miles, known as father of dredge mining, brought tugboat called Padang towing the dredger called Bucket dredge from Penang, Malesia. This dredger was operated by Tongkha Harbour Tin Dredging Berhad company. They had conducted dredge mining in the sea of Tongkha Harbour, Phuket Island for more than 60 years which was during the time that the private company was permitted to operate the mining. During 1958 to 1966, Ao Kham Hin company modified oil tanker called “Paula” and renamed to “Phibul” for dredging tin. In 1964, Southern Kinta Consolidation Limited had also operated coastal dredge mining. Furthermore, the government also made concession with Burapha Mining Company Limited for tin exploration in the sea surrounding Phuket Island, Phang Nga etc.

Moreover, in 1967, Ministry of National Development has set the guidelines for getting permission to petroleum exploration and production. On that day, there were 14 companies notified to get the permission. Nevertheless, the mission on petroleum has been withdrawn from Department of Mineral Resourced and handed over to Department of Mineral Fules, Ministry of Energy after the bureaucratic reform in 2002.

Department of Mineral Resources has explored offshore minerals in both Andaman sea and Gulf of Thailand since 1979. At the Andaman side, tin, precious heavy minerals, diamond, coal, phosphate nodules, and construction sand were found whereas gemstone (corundum) and construction sand were found at the Gulf of Thailand side.

In addition, since 2010 to present, Department of Mineral Resources has prepared the map of physical geology of seabed at the eastern region and some part of southern region of the Gulf of Thailand as the following.

Department of Mineral Resources Preparation of the map of physical geology of seabed

Details of the exploration during fiscal year B.E. 2554-2562

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Department of
Mineral Resources

Department of Mineral Resources

Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment
75/10 Rama VI Road, Ratchatewi, Bangkok
+66 2 621 9500
+66 2 354 2504
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