Iron ore exports expand in Esperance

The Port of Esperance is set to receive a new multi-user iron ore export facility adding 10 to 12 million tonnes of capacity per year.

The West Australian Government has given the go-ahead for the development of a new iron ore facility.

The expansion of the port is good news for Gold West Resources (GWR) who is looking to expand the development of iron ore projects in the region.

“The Planned scale of the Port’s expansion and the time-frame to deliver a multi-user iron ore facility by early 2015 gives us the confidence to now accelerate the development of the Wiluna West Iron project,” GWR executive general manager Craig Ferrier said.

GWR announced last year that it had entered into a capacity reservation deed with The Esperance Port Authority (EPSL) for the reservation of 3 million tonnes per annum capacity as part of new facilities to be constructed.

The development of a multi-user iron ore export facility at Esperance will underpin the development options for transport of ore from mine to ship.

The port is linked by rail through Kalgoorlie to Leonora. Trucking operations would then use a relatively short section of the unsealed Ulalla Road linking the mine to the fully sealed Goldfields Highway from Wiluna to Leonora.

EPSL have invited the private sector to participate in a registration of interest after it found it would be commercially viable to develop a facility for an additional 10 to 12 million tonnes a year.

A market sounding exercise carried out by EPSL found that iron ore production in the region could grow significantly in the next 10-15 years.

Construction of the new facility is expected to begin in early 2014.

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