4 Jan 2013

Reefton will still thrive when gold runs out - business owner

9:04 pm on 4 January 2013

A business owner in the West Coast town of Reefton says the town will continue to thrive when a local goldmine is finally worked out.

The Oceania Gold mine, which says it injects $45 million a year into the local economy, was last year given permission to expand.

But it's understood the gold may run out in three years, putting the 260 people who work there out of work.

Paul Thomas, who runs a cafe and puts on tours of Reefton, and the mine, says the small town has worked hard to reduce its complete reliance on a single industry.

He says the area receives large incomes from forestry, dairy farming, coal and tourism.