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New Caledonia

The semitropical archipelago of New Caledonia lies 930 miles (1,500 kilometers) east of Australia and 11,160 miles (18,000 kilometers) from Metropolitan France, of which it is an overseas possession. Just off the northeast coast of the main island, Grande Terre, lie the Loyalty Islands, raised coral atolls. Grande Terre is 248 miles (400 kilometers) long by 31 miles (50 kilometers) wide and is a piece of Gondwanaland that broke away from Australia 60–80 million years ago. This island contains great mineral wealth, including about 25 percent of the world's nickel reserves, and is the third-largest producer of nickel, which represents over 90 percent of its export revenues.

The rare plants that have managed to adapt to the soil's high mineral content are unique to New Caledonia. ...

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