The ship was loaded in record time totalling 45 hours from hatches opened to closed, achieving rates exceeding 900 tonnes per hour using all 4 ship's cranes, each with 12 tonne clamshell grabs.
ABx's Chief Operating Officer, Leon Hawker commented; "We have now demonstrated to all our customers that we can load and ship large tonnage cargos of bauxite very efficiently from Bell Bay Port - an all-weather, 24/7 port that can operate to high standards in all seasons, all year round. It also demonstrates that our stockpiles of bauxite performs very well, having withstood the recent major floods in northern Tasmania, without degrading. This is another landmark step for the company."
ABx's Logistics Manager, Paul Glover commented; "The bauxite is in perfect condition for the cementgrade bauxite customer and is very clean due to rigorous processing by Stornoway contractors at Bald Hill mine and careful transport pit-to-port by TasRail. The exceptional ship loading performance was a result of tight coordination between the many parties involved: namely the ships crew, QUBE stevedores, TasPorts, ship's agents Monsons Shipping, Independent Inspection Company Briar Maritime and the ABx sampling team."
Marketing strategy is succeeding
ABx plans to sell its bauxite products into the 3 main markets, namely
1. High grade metallurgical-grade bauxite for the aluminium industry;
2. Cement-grade bauxite for the manufacture of high specification cement; and,
3. Fertiliser-grade bauxite for the fertiliser industry.
When the metallurgical bauxite market is depressed and prices low due to oversupply of seaborne bauxite from Malaysia and Guinea whilst Chinese demand is weak, ABx is focusing on sales to the cement and fertiliser industries, achieving an acceptably profitable price by supplying products to suit each customer's requirements and by delivering on a just-in-time basis due to the efficient and flexible supply chain from pit to port to ship that has been created in northern Tasmania.
ABx has taken steps since December to conserve cash until its balance sheet strengthens from sales and other income, including a temporary suspension of production and haulage of bauxite products from its Bald Hill Bauxite Project at Campbell Town, Tasmania.
Mine has reopened ahead of schedule
As advised in recent weeks, now that additional sales have been finalised in good time and negotiations with new customers are well advanced, ABx and its contractors have been able to reopen the Bald Hill Bauxite Project at Campbell Town in northern Tasmania mid last week, ahead of the announced scheduled reopening on 8 August. The ready availability of suitable equipment and prompt response from Tasmania's contracting industry has been impressive.
Continuation of rehabilitation and assembly of bauxite tonnages for sales are being carried out simultaneously as the weather transitions from Winter conditions into Spring and Summer.
Expansion and development of TasTech Technology can be self-funded from cashflow
The tonnage potential in the modern Cement and Fertiliser industries is substantial but ABx remains "very prudent" about expansion plans whilst it seeks multi-year contracts with several trustworthy large customers.
ABx plans to use sales revenues, rather than capital raisings to fund the company's growth, including R&D into TasTech technology which allows ABx to separate Tasmanian bauxite into the 3 constituent product-types for metallurgical bauxite, cement-grade bauxite and fertiliser bauxite (see Figures 11 & 12 in link below):
ABx has several major expansion opportunities in Tasmania (see Figure 10 in link below), as well as in NSW and QLD, each with different capital costs and tonnage potential (see Figure 13 in link below).
To view tables and figures, please visit:
About Australian Bauxite Ltd
Australian Bauxite Limited (ABx) (ASX:ABX) has started its first bauxite mine in Tasmania and holds the core of the Eastern Australian Bauxite Province. ABx's 37 bauxite tenements in Queensland, New South Wales and Tasmania exceed 5,000 km2 and were rigorously selected for (1) good quality bauxite; (2) near infrastructure connected to export ports; and (3) free of socio-environmental constraints. All tenements are 100% owned, unencumbered & free of third-party royalties.
ABx's discovery rate is increasing as knowledge, technology and expertise grows.
The Company's bauxite is high quality gibbsite trihydrate (THA) bauxite and can be processed into alumina at low temperature.
ABx has declared large Mineral Resources at Inverell and Guyra in northern NSW, Taralga in southern NSW, Binjour in central QLD and in Tasmania confirming that ABx has discovered significant bauxite deposits including some of outstandingly high quality.
In Tasmania, at Bald Hill, the Company's first bauxite mine commenced operations on schedule on 9 December 2014 – the first new Australian bauxite mine for more than 35 years.
ABx aspires to identify large bauxite resources in the Eastern Australian Bauxite Province, which is emerging as a globally significant bauxite province. ABx has created significant bauxite developments in 3 states - Queensland, New South Wales and Tasmania. Its bauxite deposits are favourably located for direct shipping of bauxite to both local and export customers.
ABx endorses best practices on agricultural land, strives to leave land and environment better than we find it. We only operate where welcomed.
Australian Bauxite Ltd