The Australian miner Axiom says its nickel mine subsidiary development in Solomon Islands, Axiom KB, is on track for production to begin at the end of the year.
Axiom KB's Chief Executive, Ryan Mount, says prospecting operations in Isabel province are well underway and the company and its landowning partners are working hard to achieve the ambitious end-of-year start.
Mr Mount also says Axiom's initial drill tests have come back with some unexpected but exciting results.
" We commenced our exploration drilling program in December and we have got some initial results and the initial results are very pleasing. So it's what is identified is a essentially higher grade deposit than what we anticipated but again it's very early stages this is just the initial, the drill programme."
Ryan Mount says the only blip on the horizon is a court of appeal case involving the Japanese mining giant Sumitomo.
The Solomon Islands high court has ordered Sumitomo to pay about 3.8 million US dollars in court costs over a legal battle over who owned the Isabel nickel deposit.