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The government of Niger has revoked the mining license of the French nuclear fuel producer Orano, denying access to one of the world’s potentially largest uranium mines. Orano has been excluded from the Mouraren mine in northern Niger, according to a June 20 statement by the French company. The mine has a potential reserves of 200,000 tons. “Orano takes note of the decision by the Niger authorities to withdraw from its subsidiary Imouraren SA its license to work the deposit,” the company stated according to Egyptian daily Al Ahram.

The statement also said Orano could take the government to the international courts for breach of agreements. Orano still operates another uranium mine in the country.

Niger announced in July 2023 that it would be reviewing all mining licenses. Orano had received the license almost 10 years ago and was supposed to begin mining in 2015, but has not carried out any mining, claiming the collapse of uranium prices made it unprofitable – but it still held the license.

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