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HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corp., Jan. 4) – There has been much interest shown by potential overseas investors for mineral prospecting in Solomon Islands.

Minister of Mines and Energy in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Stephen Paeni, says that his Department has been flooded with applications for prospecting for minerals including gold, nickel and diamond in various parts of in the country.

He says applications have been received for prospecting for gold in various parts of the Western, Choiseul and Guadalcanal Provinces and diamond on Malaita and the Western Province.

Paeni says he hopes that the Mines and Minerals Board would meet before the end of this month to consider the applications received by his Department for mineral prospecting in Solomon Islands.

Meanwhile, he urges landowners to open their land up to development and cooperate with both the Provincial and National Governments to allow prospecting to go ahead on their land.

Paeni says his Department of Mines and Energy would do its best to ensure that the applications are considered so that prospecting activities can take off in the provinces.

January 5, 2005

Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corp.:

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