The country's resources are already being coveted before any permits have been issued. NZ Herald:
Hundreds of Waikato coastal residents have raised their concerns about the activities of a major Chinese mining corporation that has been drilling for mineral samples for months without scrutiny or consultation.
The Ruapuke Kollective handed a 1200-signature petition to the Raglan Community Board this week about Sinosteel Australia.
The company is an iron ore importer and a subsidiary of Sinosteel Corporation based in Beijing, one of China's largest state-owned enterprises.
It has lodged exploration permit applications with the Crown Minerals Office but locals say it has been drilling for core mineral samples, primarily ironsands, on private farmland south of Raglan for several months.
The NZ government auction of mineral rights continues regardless of any objections. There's even a new website for the sell-off. It's all going on the block, several chunks at a time:
This year we have proposed 25 onshore and offshore blocks for competitive tender from April 2012. The proposed blocks for 2012 cover approximately 40,285 km2 of offshore seabed and approximately 5,704 km2 of land in Waikato, Taranaki, Tasman, the West Coast and Southland.
That's 46,000 square km this year alone. At this rate it looks more like a bargain basement clearance than a tender process:
|38264||Exploration Permit||Anadarko New Zealand Company||5 Yrs||11895.02 Sq Kms||Canterbury Basin||Yes||24-Apr-2012|
|38348||Exploration Permit||Eastern Petroleum (NZ) Limited||5 Yrs||803.02 Sq Kms||East Coast Basin||19-Apr-2012|
|38349||Exploration Permit||Orient Petroleum (NZ) Limited|