Luke Rawalai | The Fiji Times | June 07, 2017
FIJI has earned a total revenue of $50.6 million since bauxite mining began in Nawailevu, Bua six years ago.
Responding to questions from this newspaper, Mineral Resources Department acting director Dr Raijeli Taga said the revenue was derived from 23 shipments of the mineral.
Dr Taga said the shipments consisted of soil containing bauxite which was further processed and separated in processing plants in China.
“The total mass exported was 1,191,530 dry metric tonnes,” she said.
“In total the exact amount of revenue derived from the bauxite stands at $50,653,983.
“The value of each shipment was in excess of $1.5 million.”
Dr Taga said only one shipment of bauxite left Fiji’s shores in 2016 bound for China.
“The average annual shipments varied from one to four respective years,” she said.
Responding to questions on how much of the revenue had been paid to resource owners, Ms Taga said the mining company would be in a better position to answer this question since they would provide details of employment and other social corporate responsibilities.
“However, please be advised that the royalty derived from these exports had been deposited to the Government,” she said. “Some of the returns of this investment so far include employment, compensation, social assistance and community project assistance.”
Earlier, Dr Taga revealed to this newspaper that $2.8 million in revenue was derived from the first shipment of bauxite this year.
However, when contacted for a comment yesterday, XINFA Aurum Exploration Fiji Ltd manager Sireli Dagaga said the Mineral Resources Department would be in a better position to comment.