The northern Sar-i-Pul province is rich in mineral and natural reserves but their extraction process faces multiple obstacles with special reference the presence of armed groups and remoteness of the areas.
Officials of the Ministry of Mines say there are many kinds of mines such as petroleum, copper and coal elsewhere in the province, which are extracted by various groups of their own in a nontechnical and nonprofessional way without government authorization.
Petroleum has been discovered in Qashqari, Aqdariya,Angoot and Bazar-i-Kami areas of the province.
- Qashqari: The area is located 12 kilometres from the center of the province where petroleum was discovered back in 1967. There are 10 wells of the oil but petroleum from two of them could be extracted.
Extraction of all mines was started in 1980 by then Soviet Unionfrom where 1,400 tons of oil was extracted for laboratory test.
- Aqdariya: It is located near Qashqari. It is at the 10 kilometres distance from the center of the province where petroleum was discovered in 1974. There are eight wells, with petroleum from three of them could be extracted.
As many as 5,997 tons of oil has been extracted for test in 1988 by former Soviet Union.
- Angot:The area is located five kilometers from Sar-i-Pul province where petroleum was discovered in1967. There are 15 wells, with oil from four of them are extractable. A totally of 3,400 tons petroleum has been extracted by the former Soviet Union.
- Bazaar-i-Kami:It is located 20 kilometres from the provincial center where petroleum was discovered in 1977 by the former Soviet Union. There are eight wells with petroleum from two of them are extractable. According to Soviet Union in 1987, the quantity of the oil has been estimated as many as 1,588 tons.
Qashqari and Angotwere contracted to Chinese companies two years ago.
The extraction of other wells was started last year but again halted due to lack of refinery facilities.
Copper mine is located in Balkhab district which has distance of 160 kilometres from the provincial capital. Its extraction has been initiated since last year by Afghan Global Mineral Company.
Coal is found in Balkhab, Sayyad and Kohistanatdistricts of the province.
- Balkhabcoal mine:
The mine is located in Gowash area of the districtwhich has a distance of 200 kilometres from the provincial capital. However, extraction of the mine could not be started yet.
- Sang-i-Merza Lang coal mine:
It is located in Saiyyad district, which is 150 kilometres away from the provincial capital.The mine is extracted by various groups in a nontechnical way without any government authorization. The coal mine is said to be of low quality.
- Kohistanat coal mine:
The mine is situated 250 kilometres away from the provincial capital where five coals mine has been discovered in the district.
All the five mines were not government control. The provincial mine directorate is striving to complete the necessary arrangements then start its extraction.