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Mining & Groundwater

The mining and quarry industry contribute favorably to Fiji economy and the current commodity prices like gold (us$1243.7/0z) have attracted
potential mining investors exploring for potential minerals deposits including offshore deep sea minerals, oil and gas. Drop in gold price has
not deterred potential investors.

Fiji is a consistent exporter of minerals, primarily gold for over 75 years now. The geographical and geological setting of Fiji at the edge of the Indo- Australian plate has attracted multinational exploration companies to invest and prospect for potential mineral deposits including gold, silver, manganese, base metals (copper, silver, zinc, etc.), industrial minerals (marble/limestone, aggregate etc.), phosphate, placer materials mineral sands (magnetite, hematite, ilmenite, rutile, zircon, topaz etc.), petroleum & gas, and deep sea minerals including nickel, cobalt, copper and manganese.

Recently there has been a surge in mineral water exports led by the internationally popular “Fiji water” 
brand. The success of water exports has further given confidence to entrepreneurs to develop bottling plants indicating market growth potential for groundwater from Fiji. With an increasing global conscience for green productivity and renewable energy, the sector is primed to further grow with a number of international companies applying for rights to explore for geothermal resources.

Further being surrounded by water, the island of Fiji are proving attractive to investors in emerging 
technologies such as offshore or undersea mining with companies actively lobbying government for opportunities to pioneer a new age of mineral exploration and production- minerals from the sea.

Potential for Mineral & Groundwater Resources
The potential for expansion of a mineral sector in Fiji is quite promising given its geological formation and location in the Pacific. Groundwater resources on the other hand, show significant potential for mineral water production. Fiji currently has 51 companies exploring for potential mineral deposits on land covering a total area of 652,273 ha. However, the interest for evaluating offshore deep sea minerals, Oil and gas has attracted few companies and two companies have been granted approval to conduct exploring for deep sea mineral while four companies have been granted licenses approval exploration for oil and gas. The total of shore area being granted for deep sea mineral exploration was 5.5M/ha compared to 531118 ha granted for on land and off shore oil & gas exploration.

Base Metals: Important massive sulphide occurrences are being evaluated and located at Colo-i-Suva, Wainaleka, 
Wainivesi district, southeaster and eastern Viti Levu. At Vanua Levu massive sulphide mineralization associated with acid volcanic occurs at, Nukudamu, Wainikoro, Mouta and Coqeloa NE of Vanua Levu.

Manganese: Commercial interest in manganese ore dated back in 1948 which have attracted potential deposit in Western Viti Levu to exploit a deposit at Votua.

Bauxite: Bauxite deposits usually in the form of gibbsitic nodules in lateritic clay are being previously evaluated at a number of localities in Fiji.

Phosphate: Phosphate deposits have been evaluated on three islands in the Lau Group. Potential phosphate deposits have been determined at shallow depth at Tuvuca (2Mt), Vanuatu (365000/t) and OgeaDrki (217,000/t).

Placer Mineral/ Mineral Sands: Residual or placer type deposits including gold and mineral sands are located at the upper Waimanu alluvial (gold), Sigatoka sand dunes (magnetite, hematite, ilmenite, rutite zircon, quartz, feldspars, and pyrxeneetc), and Ba delta (magnetic etc.).

Oil, Gas and Deep Sea Mineral: Companies that have explored in the Fiji waters before have determined traces of hydrocarbons but that still require detail works with the application of modern exploration tools to determine economical potential reservoir sites.

Limestone/Marble: Potential deposits are located at Qalimare (600Mt), Wailotua/Nakorowaiwai (1020Mt), and Devodra in Savusavu and Tau (7.0Mt), both minerals /rocks are economical demand for industrial mineral, aggregate, cement manufacturing and etc.

Rock, Sand & aggregate: Fiji has potential supply of aggregate from quarried rocks, river gravel and sand both for export and domestic usage.

Limestone & cement: There exist various sources especially in Vitilevu and include the following resources estimation at Lami (1.1Mt), Qalimare (600Mt), and Wailotua (1020 Mt), coastal coral sands , shallow and deep sea deposits by dredging.

Salt: Salt is sources from sea water (sodium chloride) and the known locally produced salt are at Tavua and Rakiraki in Viti Levu, Nadroga in South West Viti Levu and Savusavu in South East Vanua Levu. There is a potential for local production to substitute for imports and also to export regionally.

Geothermal Heat: The geothermal heat sources have been located on both islands in Vitilevu and Vanua Levu including 53 hot springs sited being identified in Fiji.

MINING DEVELOPMENT
Gold and Base Metals Mining: The current operating gold mine is located at Vatukoula owned by Vatukoula Gold Mine. The revenue earned from exporting gold and silver have supported the country's economy to date. The combined total gold and silver ounces produced at Vatukoula in 2012 were 0.57. M/oz. raking in total revenue of F$133.4 M while the first quarterly production for 2013 was worth F$32.2M for both gold and silver from 0.14 M/oz. produced from both gold and silver.

Bauxite Mining: Extensive bauxite exploration was undertaken by Aurum Exploration (Fiji) Limited since 2001 evaluating potential bauxite deposit on the North West areas of Vanua Levu. It was successful for discovering quality and high grade bauxite ore including areas around Nawailevu where the existing bauxite mine is located.

FOREIGN INVESTMENT REGULATIONS IN THE MINING & GROUNDWATER SECTOR
Under the 2009 Foreign Investment Regulations (FIR) and Foreign Investment (Amendment) Regulation 2013 undertaking any activities in Mining & Groundwater Sector does not have any minimum investment requirement.