South Africa’s mineral wealth is typically found in the following well-known geological formations and settings:
- the Witwatersrand Basin yields some 93% of South Africa’s gold output and contains considerable uranium, silver, pyrite and osmiridium resources.
- the Bushveld Complex is known for platinum group metals (with associated copper, nickel and cobalt mineralisation), chromium and vanadium-bearing titanium-iron ore formations and industrial minerals, including fluorspar and andalusite.
- the Transvaal Supergroup contains enormous deposits of manganese and iron ore.
- the Karoo Basin extends through Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, the Free State as well as Limpopo, hosting considerable bituminous coal and anthracite resources.
- the Phalaborwa Igneous Complex hosts extensive deposits of copper, phosphate, titanium, vermiculite, feldspar and zirconium ores.
- kimberlite pipes host diamonds that also occur in alluvial, fluvial and marine settings.
- heavy mineral sands contain ilmenite, rutile and zircon.
- significant deposits of lead-zinc ores associated with copper and silver are found in the Northern Cape near Aggeneys.