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|Gold mining in Vatukoula had been a low tonnage/high grade operation for much of its 55-year life. During 1991 it became clear that a change in direction was needed if the mine was going to continue to prosper. The challenges of ore reserves of only three years, the prevailing gold price and high infrastructure and fixed costs combined to force changes in mining strategy.A more productive mining method was required to lower the unit mining cost, lower the pay limit and make more effective use of the resource.The flat dipping mineralised faults or flatmakes had been mined by updip, handheld room and pillar methods with a more recent trackless development adaptation. Furthermore, up to 40 per cent of the resource was left in pillars and broken rock.|