Granite resources are very abundant in the world, but they are distributed unevenly or inadequate in commodity. As granite is a staple mineral commodity, in most cases granite is explored for in local places or explored for while being quarried according to the demands, and large-scale geological exploration is seldom conducted; therefore, no report about the statistics of the world's granite resources or reserves is available.
(1) Position of China's granite resources in the world
Analysis of the granite production and exports and imports of various countries in the world shows that China, India, Brazil, South Africa, Spain, the former USSR, France, the Republic of Korea, Finland, Norway, the United States, Italy, Portugal and Germany have relatively abundant granite resources. China is the most important source and producer of granite in the world. Its production and volume of exports have exceeded those of Italy, both ranking first in the world.
(2) Granite reserves of China
Igneous and high-grade metamorphic rocks are widespread in China and granite resources are distributed throughout China. Up to the end of 1997, there were 212 granite occurrences, which were widely distributed in all the provinces (regions and municipalities) except Shanghai and Tibet, with total retained reserves of 1.698 billion m3. Of these occurrences 185 were occurrences of granite used as stone facing, with retained reserves of 1.145 billion tons.
Besides granite, gabbro, diabase, peridotite, diorite, tuff, serpentinite, hornblendite, basalt and pyroxenite are commonly referred to in the trade as granite, but granite is most common. In China explored reserves of granite account for 62.37% of the total. The reserves of the other kinds of granite mentioned above have also been explored.
(3) Granite resources of China
China is characterized by complex geological conditions, repeated tectonic movements and frequent magmatic activities, which provide vast prospects for granite. According to the incomplete statistics of the Report on '96 Mineral Resources of China, China's total granite resources are about 23 to 24 billion m3, and the present explored reserves take up only 4% of the total resources.
China inputs more geological exploration work in economically developed eastern China and coastal areas. The level of previous exploration was low in these areas, but as these areas are generally endowed with good mineralization conditions, so long as appropriate exploration work is input according to the demands of the market, there will be still great potential for the increase of retained granite reserves.
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