Nickel reserves in the Philippines have been estimated at 3.1Mt, representing approximately 3.8% of the global total, according to a Timetric report.

Entitled ‘Base Metals Mining in the Philippines to 2020 – a Focus on the Nickel Industry’, the report provides an insight into the country’s nickel reserves, historic and forecast data on nickel production and region-wise production. It also details the competitive landscape and active, exploration and the existing nickel projects.

The country has a total of 44 operating metallic mines, with more than 50% being for nickel. According to the Philippines Mines and Geosciences Bureau, the country has 27 nickel mines.

"The country has a total of 44 operating metallic mines, with more than 50% being for nickel."

Nickel deposits are primarily found in laterite ores (limonite being a member of the laterite family), but the mining authority mentions that certain deposits are also associated with dunite, pyroxenite and gabbroic rocks.

Palawan and Zambales provinces are major mining hubs for nickel along with Surigao del Norte, Agusan del Norte and the Dinagat Islands. The deposits occur in combination with other elements including green chromium, lead, cobalt, silver and gold.

The Timetric report mentions that mining industry in Philippines is controlled by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau, while it is regulated by the Philippine Mining Act of 1995.

Gold, silver, copper and chromite constitute the other metals that are mined in the country, as well as nickel.