Bauxite reserves of nearly one billion tons have been detected in the southern province of Binh Phuoc, the National Institute of Mining Metallurgy Science and Technology said Friday.
Located in two mines in Bu Dang District, the new reserves are the third largest after those found in the central highlands provinces of Dak Nong and Lam Dong, according to the institute under the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Lam Dong was estimated to have some 1.2 billion tons of bauxite reserves, and Dak Nong, 3.4 billion tons. Bauxite is refined into alumina, which is then smelted into aluminum metal.
The newly-discovered reserves will meet the demand of the ministry's plan to build an aluminum plant in Binh Phuoc in 2016, the institute said.
Vietnam's first aluminum plant is being constructed in Lam Dong and expected to start production this year with the capacity of producing 650,000 tons of alumina annually. Another plant also broke ground in Dak Nong early this year.
Vietnam has 5.4 billion tons of bauxite reserves, the world's largest after Guinea and Australia, according to a US Geological Survey report published last year.