Scientists in China have identified a huge goldmine that is worth hundreds of millions of pounds, 2000 metres under the sea in the waters of the Sanshan Island. The goldmine is the first to be discovered in the ocean surrounding China, east of the Bohai Sea.

Initial estimates believe that there is at least 470.47 tons of gold to be mined – anything over 20 tons of gold is considered to be a 'big' mine. Following three years of searching, the Shandong Third Institute of Geological and Mineral Exploration have located the incredibly valuable pit.

However, experts now face the daunting challenge of accessing the mine, which is currently out of reach for excavators. reports that, despite the East Asian country being the world's leading producer of gold, it currently lacks the technological ability to reach potential operations 1000 metres below the Earth's surface.

It adds that, due to it being under the sea, it will be particularly hard to locate accurately, with over a thousand workers needed for the operation. Zhang Junjin, programme manager of the mining venture, told the news outlet: "It's no easier than the docking of a space ship."

Xu Zhiqin of the Chinese Academy of Science added: "Drilling in the ocean will mark the fact that China's geological exploration has extended from land to sea, and that it is a strong power in geological terms."