19/03/2021 - 15:56

Venture kicks off Tassie iron ore plant construction

19/03/2021 - 15:56

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ASX-listed Venture Minerals has started building a key piece of production infrastructure at its rejuvenated Riley iron ore project in north-west Tasmania, with structural, mechanical, piping and electrical installation of the wet screening plant now well under way. Construction of the plant will be followed by its commissioning, which the company expects to take place late next month.

ASX-listed Venture Minerals has started building a key piece of production infrastructure at its rejuvenated Riley iron ore project in north-west Tasmania, with structural, mechanical, piping and electrical installation of the wet screening plant now well under way. Construction of the plant will be followed by its commissioning, which the Perth-based company expects to take place late next month. Venture has also appointed additional key operations personnel to beef up the Riley mine development management team.

Venture Minerals Managing Director, Andrew Radonjic said: “Venture welcomes the addition of … experienced iron ore mine operator, Geoff Halloran as General Manager, John Hall (experienced Project Manager) as Construction and Commissioning Manager, and an iron ore-experienced Shipping Officer. As the company moves towards its first iron ore shipment, the Riley mine development team is quickly falling into place with a perfect blend of start-up and operational experience in the iron ore space.”

Venture hopes to be hauling and exporting its first shipment of iron ore sometime in the June quarter this year.

Riley was previously mined by Venture about seven years ago before declining iron ore prices prompted the company to cease production in August 2014 – a problem that is but a distant memory for the iron ore industry today with a tonne of iron ore currently weighing in at about US$170 per tonne.

The bumper iron ore price potentially transforms Riley’s economics against the background of the company’s August 2019 pre-feasibility study that assumed a benchmark iron ore price of just US$90 per tonne for a 62 per cent iron content product.

Riley hosts immediately accessible near-surface ore reserves of 1.6 million tonnes of ore at an average grade of 57 per cent iron with low impurities.

Although the resuscitated project’s initial mine life stands at just two years, the prior PFS forecasts Riley spitting out $172.8 million in gross revenues over that period and $37.6 million in EBITDA for a total cash surplus of some $30.6 million, based on the lower iron ore price.

Life-of-mine cash operating costs for Riley have been estimated at an average $56 per tonne and $85.12 per tonne when including shipping costs.

Total CAPEX for the revival of Riley is expected to come in at an incredibly low $6.7 million, with the wet screening plant speaking for just under half of that figure.

 

Is your ASX-listed company doing something interesting? Contact: matt.birney@businessnews.com.au

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