11 Jul 2011

Australian company plans ironsand mining in Fiji

10:29 am on 11 July 2011

An Australian mining company is one step closer to extracting iron from sands in a Fiji lagoon at the mouth of the Ba River.

Amex Resources Limited has finished a feasibility study confirming likely technical and financial success.

The company's Technical Director, Tim Putt, says the price of iron has risen substantially since the area was last explored in the 1970s and it has lain domant until 2008 when Amex began testing.

Mr Putt says the company is now preparing to apply for a Mining Lease at the Ba River mouth for an area 15 kilometres long and four kilometres wide.

"On the back of our very positive pre feasibility study we've commenced our bankable feasibility study which is our next stage where we really start to tighten up the numbers in terms of budgeting and costs and also looking at the market and potentially off take agreements into China and Asia and as part of that we'll be submitting a Mining Lease application to the Fijian government."

Tim Putt says an environmental impact report is included as part of the Mining Lease application.

He says the project is expected to cost US$60 million to get underway and will provide about 300 jobs.