A New Book Reveals China’s Mining Scale in Tibet
In his new book, titled Spoiling Tibet, Gabriel Lafitte argues that China’s long dream to make Tibetan mineral more profitable is no longer a dream, but a reality. “Up until now from the Chinese perspective, Tibet has been a place where China has poured billions and billions of dollars for basic infrastructure,” Lafitte said. But his research found that it is starting to change. Like China’s railway to Tibet, which many people had never believed to succeed until 2006, some people still don’t think China can succeed in extracting Tibetan minerals in a profitable scale. Kerry Brown, Director of China Studies Center at the University of Sydney, quoted an Oxford geology professor saying about Tibetan minerals, “Everyone thinks it is overflowing with precious metals and all the rest; but it would be very hard to get access to them.” Lafitte sees that is not the case in reality. “Mining is really shaping up to be one of two major industries that will transform Tibet from cost center to profit center,” Lafitte told Tibet in Review. Dr. Brown wrote a review on Spoiling Tibet, in which he said Lafitte has brought up the concerns of Tibetans about China’s mining in Tibet and stated that although China is accusing Tibetan environmental activists as separatists, exploitation of Tibetan environment will ultimately affect China itself because it relies on the Tibetan rivers.