JERUSALEM (Mar. 12)
Government officials reported today the discovery of an ore stratum with proven reserves of 15,000,000 tons of phosphates, one of Israel’s most valuable exports.
Professor Jacob Bentzur, director of the Government’s Geological Institute, said the stratum had been found south of Arad in southern Israel in a survey which was started in December 1961. He added that the find indicated the possible existence of another 105,000,000 tons of phosphate in the area.
Laboratory tests indicated that the first extractions were rich in phosphorus. Professor Bentzur said that nowhere in the new find was the phosphate more than seven inches under the surface of the earth. The experts have recommended setting up seven mining fields along the route of the stratum, which is a few miles north of the Beersheba-Sodom road.