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Local and international companies are testing SA’s marine laws in a bid to increase marine mineral and petroleum extraction. SA has jurisdiction over an extensive marine environment, with an exclusive economic zone of about 1.5-million square kilometres — bigger than SA’s terrestrial area of about 1.2-million square kilometres. In 2014 the Department of Mineral Resources granted rights to three private companies to prospect for marine phosphate. It allows the companies to prospect over about 10% of SA’s exclusive economic zone, extending from the northern reaches of the West Coast, down to Cape Town, around the peninsula and up to Mossel Bay. The three companies were each granted a prospecting area of about 50,000km². Green Flash Trading 251 and Green Flash Trading 257 are virtually identical and have no experience in marine mining. Diamond Fields International is a Canadian mining firm with marine exploration and mining rights in other jurisdictions. Alarmingly, the type of mining ...

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