One of the key figures behind the massive Oakajee port and rail infrastructure project, Oakajee Port and Rail chief executive, Chris Eves stepped down from his position yesterday with the company.
Full announcement below:
Chris Eves steps down as CEO, Alwyn Vorster appointed in acting capacity
Oakajee Port and Rail (OPR) and Christopher Eves advise that Mr Eves has resigned as Chief Executive Officer of OPR with effect from 9 September 2009.
Mr Eves has been CEO of OPR since October 2007 and led OPR's successful bid to be selected by the WA Government to develop the multi billion dollar Oakajee port and rail infrastructure project in the mid-west region of Western Australia.
Following execution of a State Development Agreement with the WA Government in March, OPR is now progressing with detailed planning and studies that are due for completion in March 2010.
As the rail and port projects are moving into the engineering and construction phases of development, Mr Eves said he considered it was an appropriate time to step down as CEO.
Alwyn Vorster, OPR's Director - Supply Chain, is appointed with immediate effect in the role of Chief Development Officer responsible for all aspects of the project determining the scale, commercial framework and customer related direction of the project. In the interim, Mr Vorster will also assume additional responsibilities associated with the Chief Executive Officer pending an appointment of a permanent replacement.
Saburo Takeuchi, Vice-President Iron Ore Division of Mitsubishi Development Pty Ltd which has a 50% interest in OPR, said Mr Eves had played a very important role in taking OPR to where it is today.
"We would like to thank Chris for his drive and enthusiasm in developing OPR into an outstanding infrastructure group that has the capacity and ability to deliver on this major project," said Mr Takeuchi.
"He has also put in place a very strong management team at OPR that has the skills and experience to bring the project to fruition."
Paul Kopejtka, Executive Chairman of Murchison Metals Ltd which also has a 50% interest in OPR, said Mr Eves was instrumental in OPR's selection as preferred developer of the new Oakajee port and rail infrastructure.
"His background in legal and regulatory affairs was extremely beneficial to OPR through the challenging Government processes of the past few years," said Mr Kopejtka.
"As the project is now moving towards the development and construction phases, we have agreed that it is an appropriate time for Chris to step down and we wish him well in the future."
Mr Eves said he had thoroughly enjoyed his time with OPR and wished the group well with the development of the project.
"This is a truly significant project for Australia and I have no doubt OPR will deliver on its mission to open up international markets for all miners in the mid-west," said Mr Eves.