Luke Rawalai | The Fiji Times | November 07, 2017
XINFA Aurum Exploration Fiji Ltd is continuing with mining at the Naibulu bauxite mine site.
Ministry of Lands and Mineral Resources permanent secretary Malakai Finau said mining was progressing well.
Mr Finau said the company was trying to stockpile as much as it could during the dry weather.
“Only one shipment has left Bua shores for the Chinese market so far this year,” he said.
“We were all anticipating for the first shipment.
“The first shipment which left the country in March this year earned Fiji $2.8 million in revenue.
“The shipment to the Chinese market weighed 58,709.60 tonnes.”
This brings total earnings to about $52.2m since mining started at Nawailevu in Bua in 2010.
In 2015, this newspaper reported that the company had exported 1.2 million tonnes of bauxite worth $48m from the shores of Bua in the Northern Division.
In July last year, the company said they were expecting to export 70,000 tonnes of bauxite valued at $4m by mid-August, however, in September it was announced that a shipment of 69,000 tonnes valued at $1.4m had been exported.
Company director Derek Qiu earlier said they could not export more bauxite because of a drop in global market price.
He said the quality of bauxite was another contributing factor to the slow export process.
Director Mineral Development Dr Raijeli Taga earlier said the challenging bauxite market, coupled with issues surrounding the ore’s quality, affected bauxite export.
Despite this situation, Dr Taga said XINFA Aurum Exploration Fiji Ltd would continue with its mining operation to stockpile for later export when the commodity price improves.