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Fiji Time: 4:10 AM on Friday 25 April

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Wet weather stops bauxite mining

Serafina Silaitoga
Monday, February 03, 2014

BAUXITE mining has been suspended until weather conditions improve

Aurum Exploration Fiji Ltd director Derek Qiu confirmed work had stopped in November after the last shipment left for China. The company sent 12 shipments last year.

"Mining work has stopped but we are still keeping the workers to attend to maintenance," Mr Qiu said.

"The bad weather has affected mining and we hope it improves. During this period of bad weather, the company has only incurred expenses and not income."

Mr Qiu said such situations were part of the business-risk expectations.

"When we invested, we knew this would happen and it is part of risks that businesses face.

"We have kept our 105 workers and continued to pay them their normal rate.

"The maintenance work is basically checking our machines, servicing our vehicles, repairing the roads and bridges and the jetty as well.

"It's important that we maintain our assets such as machinery to prevent them from getting bad."

Mr Qiu said the company was hoping for better weather conditions soon so mining could resume. The company exported $28.8million worth of bauxite to China last year.