Asia’s Hidden Treasure

Jan 3, 2019 | Asia, Biz, China, Gov, N.Korea, Philippines

Asia’s Hidden Treasure

Jan 3, 2019 | Asia, Biz, China, Gov, N.Korea, Philippines

East Asia Desk 

 

by Kari Amarnani
"Lover of words and politics. Aspiring novelist."

One of a Kind: Take a Look at Asia’s Wondrous Treasury of Natural Resources

Get the inside look in Asia’s rare and precious supply of natural wonders

The beauty in the nature all around us is what makes the universe so splendid and astonishing. We are so accustomed to seeing these everyday blessings that we no longer stop and think about how truly lucky we are to receive them.

When discussing the beauty of natural resources, it would almost be a crime to not think about Asia. As the world’s largest continent, Asia holds some of the most gorgeous and valuable areas that provide tons of resources in keeping the nations afloat. In fact, these spots are so favored that they become tourist attractions. For example, the Banaue Rice Terraces in the Philippines is a famous spot to visit from people all over the world, marveling at its “living cultural landscape of unparalleled beauty” as described from UNESCO, a United Nations organization.

The attraction of these spots are not only held in the physical attributes that they display to the world, but it is also about how they affect the land. These places provide profitable elements that boost the nation’s standing in an economic sense while preserving its essence and reputation.

The first step to appreciating the benefits of Asia’s natural resource reserve is to know what exactly they keep packing in that gorgeous land that they inhabit.

Asia is a continent full of beauty, culture and opportunity. The natural resources that fill the land are incomparable to any other. Though it is rich in value, just like any other place in the world, what sets it apart is that there are certain substances that are dominantly found in this part of the world sphere, making them Asia’s haven for esteem and profit.

Below are Asia’s ‘goldmine’ of amazing natural resources:

Gold, the precious mineral we all sought for:

Gold is one of the rarest minerals in the world. It is so rare that it only comprises of 0.003 parts per one million of the entire earth’s crust. Anyone and anything should count themselves fortunate if given the opportunity to possess even a smidgen of this unrivaled vision.

China is the world’s leading gold producer and it is not recusing that title any time soon.

The United States and Canada with a combined output of 405.8 tonnes. Seems like a lot, doesn’t it? Well, that number is about to get real scared soon, because in China, a populous nation in East Asia, produces about 426 tonnes all on its own!

There are almost too many countries in Asia to count that produce gold and gold-infused minerals and elements. In fact, Asia’s regions contain some of the biggest and largest resources for gold in the entire world. If this is what China is shelling out, imagine how much greater gold there is out there in the rest of Asia.

Gold, though invaluable and treasured, is a common find in Asia. Not only is it available at present time, but some countries also have big futures with the production of gold, namely Japan, Iraq and Laos. Indonesia follows China as the biggest gold producer in Asia, and we have Uzbekistan, a country that holds the largest gold mine in the world, following in third place. I don’t know about you, but these are mighty strong places to be for only the first three states in the continent. The list isn’t even close to being over. Overall, 91% of Asia’s gold is produced in 6 countries— China, Indonesia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, the Philippines and Mongolia.

Oil, also known as “Black Gold”, a classic commodity fundamental in the everyday life:

Oil— we use it every day. It’s definitely one of those things people don’t know they consume on a regular basis. Oil supplies energy to appliances that require power to function. So when you are traveling, whether by car or plane, it’s the crude oil that makes any of it possible. What a convenient element in our lives!

If we are going to be talking about how Asia is rich in elements and minerals, we can’t leave out its prized oil mines. The Arabian Peninsula, all together, provides most of the oil reserves in Asia followed by Russia and China. The leading oil producer in Asia is Saudi Arabia, contributing to almost 12 million barrels in a single day. Yes, you read that right. Russia follows Saudi Arabia with 10 millions barrels of oil, and China follows Russia with 4 barrels of oil. Collectively, the top three producers of oil in Asia provide an astounding 26 million barrels of oil daily! And we haven’t gotten into the rest of the oil-producing states yet.

To put it in perspective, seven out of the top ten countries that produce the most oil worldwide belong in Asia, and if that is not impressive, I don’t know what is. In order, these countries are Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, Iran, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait. Currently, Saudi Arabia stands as the largest exporter of oil in the world, not to mention, having the largest number of oil reserves.

Coal, the most abundant and useful mineral in existence:

What makes coal so important? Why is this rock essential to everybody’s day-to-day lives, so much so that nobody can ever have enough of it? Gee, I don’t know— how important is electricity? Coal is the leading source of electricity generation in the world. It is so conducive for electrical power that it provides 40% of the earth’s production of electricity. The energy capabilities of coal are simply ‘electrifying’!

Brace yourselves— this is about to get crazy. The country in Asia with the most coal? By a landslide, it is China. To emphasize how much coal it produces, let me add some points for comparison. The second country on that list is India, providing 540 million tonnes of coal. That seems like a lot, doesn’t it? China produces 3.6 billion tonnes of coal. That is 44.6% of the entire stock of coal in the world!

Five out of the top ten countries that produce the most coal worldwide belong in Asia, which makes up for half of the general production of the stone in the world. The countries— China, India, Indonesia, Russia and Kazakhstan— are representing Asia’s coal frontrunners, and my are they doing a great job. Thanks for lighting up our lives, you guys!

Natural Gas, the resource that protects the planet from harm:

The importance of natural gas is so extensive and valuable as it does so much for the world and preserving its nature and beauty. Having it provides major advantages in aiding the environment with the reduction of greenhouse gases and fog. Not just that, but it is something that most people make use of every day. Fancy a nice, hearty lunch? This resource makes it possible to cook using gas to induce heat. The benefits are endless!

Asia leads the world with its production of natural gases by a longshot. In the worldwide list of the top ten producers of natural gas, countries in Asia dominate more than half of them, contributing to a whopping estimate of 43 trillion cubic meters of gas. Iran leads the way with 30 trillion cubic meters of gas— a landslide victory followed by Turkmenistan with 7.5 trillion. The Arabian Peninsula takes the cake this round! The countries with the most production of natural gas, in order, are Iran, Turkmenistan, the United Arab Emirates, Russia, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Sapphire, the blue gem of wisdom and royalty:

They say diamonds are a girl’s best friends. Well, I believe Sapphires hit the nail on the head just as diamonds do. Sapphire is a precious gemstone of blue radiance and beauty. This baby is not as common as you think it is. Sapphires can only be mined in a handful of places, and most of these places are in Asia.

One can say that it is accepted knowledge that all the best gems and stones are found in the Asian region, rooted in its upbringing of culture and buried meanings and sentiments. It is not simply a gem. It is a representation of many qualities and attributes, dedicated to being honed by the person wearing it.

Sapphires can mainly be found in India, Vietnam, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. India’s sapphires are universally known to be of the highest quality in the world. It has been described as being “the bluest of the blue” and demand the most expensive prices in the market. Others that are renownedly known are the sapphires of Myanmar. Displaying a darker shade of sapphire reminiscent of the sparkling darkness of the night, these gems are highly requested due to their rarity. Lastly, sapphires in Sri Lanka are one of the most unique of the bunch. How? They do not stick its original blue form. Sapphires in this region come in many different colors. How amazing is that?

Untapped Resources of Endless Possibilities: What is Yet to Come?

Asia’s natural resources have incomparable qualities of elements distinguished from the rest of the world. It is time to discover which places in Asia have the most unexplored and untapped minerals, and what exactly are these treasures stowed within the earth known to no man?

North Korea, the undiscovered underground pit of countless minerals:

North Korea’s economy is a little shy of success when it is compared to its Asian brethren, but imagine how much their economy would boost if they decided to mine all the glorious, unexplored earth they’ve been holding on to for so long? They would be far richer than the rest.

What’s North Korea packin’? Get this— they’ve got magnesite, coal, copper ore, iron ore, limestone, zinc ore, gold ore, tungsten, molybdenite and graphite. It is reported that the state contains development for large mines with all the minerals stated above. Collectively, how much would all that cost? A staggering estimation of $10 trillion. I’m shaking in my boots!

The reasons that these minerals have stayed untapped for quite a while are that North Korea chooses to prioritize its inner-state infrastructure seeing as most of the groundwork is undeveloped, and the doozy of them all: mining in the sector remains to be illegal.

Private mining has been illegal in North Korea, although the sector contributes to 14% of the country’s economy. What makes this possible is the exports that North Korea engages in with numerous countries that desire the minerals in their possession, particularly most of its neighbors especially China. This adds to further complication seeing as exports are also prohibited in the country. Though sanctions are released, the payout for the demand trumps the compensation. Pyongyang, North Korea’s capital, is known to be quite a sneaky squirrel, evading sanctions and fees by compromising shipping processes.

To quote Andrea Berger, Associate at the Royal United Services Institute:

North Korea is very sophisticated in concealing the fact that it is, indeed, North Korea doing business overseas. It’s good at hiding in plain sight.”

Hopefully, North Korea gets out of this pickle soon! A great, big wealth awaits.

The Philippines, a sanctuary with gold hidden deep in its land:

The Philippines is a sitting on land full of infinite worth. Literally. Geographically speaking, the Philippine archipelago is blessed to be existing above underwater mountains and terrains that were formed by magma caused by the properties of the inner earth. This brings about the formation of various minerals, elements and metals not always known throughout the world. But as of now, the Philippines is riddled with a certain metal that is universally valuable and powerful: gold.

The country has a massive reserve of untapped gold just waiting to be grabbed. The first indicator of this large undiscovered gold in the land was back in 1982. In the region of Hinoba-an, pure and raw nuggets of gold were found underneath one its rivers, sparking international scrutiny and prompting researchers from other lands to visit and marvel at the discovery. Since then, with further investigation, it has been declared that the Philippines is actually a sanctuary of gold.

The country is well aware of this wonderful gift, and yet, nothing substantial has really been done about it. Why does the Philippines stay hush and relaxed about this knowledge? Many reasons come into play.

One, the country would have to risk its stance with the preservation of its resources and deal with environmental issues— as if it does not have enough of that as it is. Two, the country regards this advantage as a buried boon and plans to thread it lightly. Knowing it has all this supply of gold yet to be uncovered gives the state an upper hand in times of economic downfall. It’s clear that the Philippines is approaching this situation with careful organization and planning. Pretty AU-some, don’t you think?

 

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