Mining and Mineral sector resilient amidst pandemic
March 7, 2021 5:50 am
Mineral Resources Department Acting Director, Raymond Mohammed
While the COVID-19 pandemic has hit several sectors, the mineral exploration and the mining sector have proved to be resilient against the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the Reserve Bank of Fiji’s Annual Report, Gold production declined by 8.9 percent to 34,254 ounces in the 2019/2020 financial year due to technical issues, power supply constraints, and coronavirus-related supply chain disruptions.
However, during the same period, gold exports rose by 16.4 percent as the price rose amid the global health pandemic.
Mineral Resources Department Acting Director, Raymond Mohammed, says there has been a lot of interest in gold exploration.
“We are processing one for Sabeto, one for Vuda, one for Rakiraki, and one for Nakauvadra, these are the prospects so we are currently processing another five”.
He is optimistic that the sector will assist in economic recovery.
“The sector has the potential to be able to support the government in economic recovery especially during this unprecedented time so we are working with the active mining leases to be able to explore any new business development opportunities and also to ramp up production given the favorable economic conditions”.
Mohammed adds they have issued eight mining licenses which are currently active and thirty-one mineral special prospecting licenses.