Natural Salt Resources
November 17, 2020
The KHEWRA Salt Mine (or Mayo Salt Mine) is located in KHEWRA, north of Pind Dadan Khan, an administrative subdivision of Jhelum District, Punjab Region, Pakistan, which rises from the Indo-Gangetic Plain. It is Pakistan’s largest and oldest salt mine and the world’s second largest. Also It is a major tourist attraction, drawing up to 250,000 visitors a year.
Estimates of the total reserves of salt in the mines range from 82 million tons to 600 million tons. In raw form it contains negligible amounts of Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Sulphates and moisture, with Iron, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Chromium and Lead as trace elements. Rock Salt from Khewra, also known as Himalayan salt, is red, pink, off-white or transparent. In the early years of British rule, the Khewra mine produced about 28,000 to 30,000 tons per annum; it increased to about 187,400 tons per annum for the five fiscal years ending 1946–7 and to 136,824 tons for the two years ending 1949–50
The mine’s output was reported in 2003 to be 385,000 tons of salt per annum, which amounts to almost half of Pakistan’s total production of rock salt. At that rate of output, the tunnel would be expected to last for another 350 years.