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Australian Junior Miners to Develop New Infrastructure in Pilbara
Australian Junior Miners to Develop New Infrastructure in Pilbara
Perth, Sep 7, 2009 AEST (ABN Newswire) - A group of junior miners in Pilbara region have formed an alliance to develop an independent iron ore export terminal at Australia's Port Hedland, while the big miners have dominated their own infrastructure projects.

The members of the alliance include Atlas Iron Ltd. (ASX:AGO), Brockman Resources Ltd. (ASX:BRM), BC Iron Ltd. (ASX:BCI) and FerrAus Ltd. (ASX:FRS) have appointed global engineering company Sinclair Knight Merz to undertake a pre-feasibility study and will then determine project costs.

The project could have the potential to handle 50 million tons iron ore per year by 2013, more than a third of last year's total exports from Port Hedland.
The miners, operating under the North West Iron Ore Alliance (NWIOA), also want the Western Australian state government to persuade BHP into sharing rail haulage lines to Port Hedland, sources with knowledge of the situation said.

Chinese steel mills may also be interested in building the infrastructure and investment in the port.

Murchison Metals Ltd. (ASX:MMX) and partner Mitsubishi Corp. (TYO:8085) are developing the US$4 billion Oakajee Port & Rail joint venture (OPR) to service the emerging midwest iron ore region in Western Australia. OPR was awarded the right to build the infrastructure by the state government last year, winning out over rival tenderer Yilgarn Infrastructure, which was backed by China.


Michelle Liang
Asia Business News Asia Bureau
Tel: +61-2-9247-4344

Related Companies

Murchison Metals Limited        
Mitsubishi Corporation         
Ferraus Limited        
Brockman Resources Limited          
BC Iron Limited           
Atlas Iron Limited          

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