23/12/2009 - 11:06

Australasian up on Balmoral approval

23/12/2009 - 11:06

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Shares in Australasian Resources have moved up this morning following the announcement of environmental approval from the state government for its $2.7 billion Balmoral South iron ore project.

Shares in Australasian Resources have moved up this morning following the announcement of environmental approval from the state government for its $2.7 billion Balmoral South iron ore project.

This follows the state's Environmental Protection Authority report and recommendations received on October 5 and the federal government's environmental approval for the Pilbara project on November 17.

The company said the approval provided further impetus for it to negotiate and finalise a project funding deal with a strategic partner.

It's understood that the company is currently in discussions with a number of parties in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia over a possible key role in the development of Balmoral South.

It follows the collapse of exclusive finance talks with Shougang Corporation in July after the Chinese company failed to deliver a finance offer by June 30 in return for rights to the operation.

There is also a statutory appeals period which closes on January 7 during which time Australasian may appeal against any conditions imposed.

Australasian shares were up 2.5 cents, or 5.68 per cent, to 46.5 cents per share at AEST1340.

 

Full announcement below:

23 December 2009
Balmoral South Iron Ore Project receives State Government Environmental Approval

Key points:
- State Environment Minister approves construction and operation of the Balmoral South Iron Ore Project

Australian iron ore company Australasian Resources Ltd (Australasian or ASX: ARH) has achieved another critical milestone towards the development of the Balmoral South Iron Ore Project (Project) in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, with the release of the Western
Australian Environment Minister's approval of the Project, subject to the statutory appeals process defined within Section 100(3) of the Environmental Protection Act 1986.

This approval closely follows the release of the positive State Environmental Protection Authority Report and Recommendations on 5 October 20091, and the subsequent release of the Federal Government approval of the Project under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (1999) on 17 November 20092.

The statutory appeals period, during which the proponent (Australasian) may appeal against any conditions imposed, closes on 7 January 2010.

Release of the State Government approval confirms that the impact assessment process is complete with the Project deemed to be environmentally acceptable. It provides further impetus for Australasian to negotiate and finalise a Project funding agreement with a strategic partner.

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