Chinese ready to deal

With the iron ore price wrangle continuing between the big miners, Japan and China, two major Chinese players have moved to shore up future supplies from a couple of WA newcomers. Sinosteel Corp, China’s second biggest iron ore distributor, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with aspiring Pilbara producer Cape Lambert Iron Ore Ltd to buy up to 100 per cent of its production, expected to be between five to 10 million tonnes a year. The two are also negotiating for the joint venture development of the project. Cape Lambert said the MOU was not binding and it was continuing similar negotiations with Chinese trading group Shandong Yuansheng International Trading Co Ltd. Sinosteel also has a joint venture with Midwest Corp over its $1.5 billion Weld Range and Koolanooka iron ore projects in the mid-west. The region’s other aspirant, Gindalbie Metals Ltd, is in supply talks with China’s second-largest steel mill, Ansteel, after upgrading its Karara pellet project from four to seven million tonnes a year from 2010.

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