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SUVA, Fiji (FijiSUN, Dec. 16) - An Australian prospecting company is awaiting word from the Fiji Mineral Resource Department for a license to conduct deep-sea exploration for gold and copper minerals in Fiji waters.

Nautilus Minerals Limited approached the Fiji government in 1999 for an exploration license to search for gold, copper and zinc, however according to Director Mineral Resources, Ifereimi Dau, the reason behind the delay is that there’s no policy on off shore mine exploration.

Dau added that there has been opposition from Marine Scientists of Japan as they are currently carrying out research in the North Back Arc Basin, 330 kilometers to the west of Viwa in Yasawa.

Research data revealed by the government shows that the Arc basin contains hydrothermal deposits, which are minerals.

Nautilus Minerals Limited has formed an alliance with Australian company Placer Dome to explore deep-sea deposits in Papua New Guinea and is awaiting word from the Fiji government before the start of their operation here.

December 17, 2004


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