19/12/2008 - 13:42

New state agreement for CITIC Pacific

19/12/2008 - 13:42

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CITIC Pacific Mining has been given the green light to submit proposals for a 70 million tonne operation for its Sino iron ore project in the Pilbara following the passing of amendments to its state agreement act.

CITIC Pacific Mining has been given the green light to submit proposals for a 70 million tonne operation for its Sino iron ore project in the Pilbara following the passing of amendments to its state agreement act.

In a statement today, the company welcomed the amendments made to the original state agreement, which was struck by billionaire Clive Palmer through his company Mineralogy.

CITIC acquired mining rights for 2 billion tonnes of magnetite ore from Mineralogy and has started construction on a 6mt pellet plant operation and associated infrastructure. The company plans to build a port at Cape Preston and other harbour facilities.

Chief executive Barry Fitzgerald said the passing of the amendments to the agreement allows CITIC to produce and export magnetite concentrate in addition to pellets, and allows a full project development proposal to be submitted.

The amendments also provided increased certainty for the project to proceed beyond the initial scope to planned capacity, Mr Fitzgerald said.

According to CITIC's website, the company plans to increase production to over 70mtpa.

The company plans to export 27.6mt of ore concentrate and iron pellets each year.

The latest news comes amid a climate of increasing uncertainty for the once-dominant iron ore sector, with mining giant Rio Tinto already flagging a 10 per cent cut to export forecasts for 2008 and Fortescue Metals Groups suspending expansion plans for its Pilbara operations.

In contrast, CITIC is on the recruitment drive for 100 workers across a variety of roles in a bid to get the project in production by 2010.

 

 

The announcement is pasted below:

 

CITIC Pacific Mining has welcomed the approval by the Western Australian Parliament of amendments to the State Agreement Act which governs its mining project at Cape Preston in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. The amendments mark a significant milestone for the Sino Iron project and will enable CITIC Pacific Mining to produce and export magnetite concentrate in addition to pellets.

CITIC Pacific Mining acquired mining rights for two billion tonnes of magnetite ore from Mineralogy and plans to export 27.6 million tonnes of product per annum.

Significant site preparation and construction work has been undertaken on the Sino Iron project after it received approvals earlier in 2008 allowing construction of a six million tonne pellet plant operation and associated infrastructure.

CITIC Pacific Mining Chief Executive Barry Fitzgerald said the passing of the amendments to the State Agreement Act provided increased certainty for the project to proceed beyond this initial scope to fulfill its planned capacity.

"We acknowledge the efforts of the Western Australian Government in recognising the urgency of these amendments and helping facilitate their swift passage through Parliament", said Mr Fitzgerald.

"In these difficult economic times, projects like the Sino Iron project are vital to keep the Western Australian economy and employment strong. By approving the amendments, Government has recognised the opportunity for sustained growth and stability and the importance of reducing project risk," said Mr Fitzgerald.

The approval of the amendments to the State Agreement Act allows a full project development proposal to be submitted and associated approvals to be finalised to enable progress on construction as planned.

Once the project is operating, CITIC Pacific Mining has committed to deliver a significant social benefits package which features a range of initiatives designed to minimise the project's footprint and ensure social, environmental and economic benefits of flow to the community. The package has strong focus on engaging local indigenous communities and Traditional Owner groups in employment, training and business capability development as well as local content commitments.

 

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