An Australian mining company has been granted a special lease to extract more than 200 million tonnes of iron sand from the Ba river delta in Fiji.
The 21-year lease was presented to Amex Resources Limited last Thursday by the head of Fiji's interim government, Commodore Frank Bainimarama.
Commodore Bainimarama says the company is expected to extract about 80 million dollars worth of iron ore and pump more than 40 million dollars into Fiji's economy.
He says the project will create 300 full-time and 50 short-term jobs for Fijians.
The Special administrator of the Ba town council, Arun Prasad, says the mining company will also be involved in river dredging which will alleviate the town's problem with floods.
"Ba Town Council and the people of Ba are very happy to hear that the government has granted the license. First of all it is going to assist in the dredging programme, we're very vulnerable to flooding and it is going to reduce the impact of flooding in Ba."
The Ba town council's Arun Prasad.