A government analyst in New Caledonia says it is set for a nickel boom this year.
According to the AFP news agency the French Pacific territory is eyeing a significant boost in production to meet increasing global demand.
A Government economic expert Olivier Sudrie says growth in nickel, an essential ingredient in producing stainless steel, had reached three percent last year compared to 3.7 percent in 2010.
Mr Sudrie predicts a major nickel boom with exports expected to generate 2.5 billion US dollars in this year compared to 1.4 billion in 2007.
New Caledonia is home to 25 percent of the world's nickel reserves and is currently the sixth largest global producer.