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Opportunities still flowing for Australian mining

Editorial
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With growth in Australian mining investment slowing, the resources sector is shifting towards operational management and existing resources rather than new investment. This means that wins for Australian businesses will be harder to find. But they are still out there.

Even with the slowing market, expenditure on mining investment is still expected to stay high for some time, given the large amount of investment already under way,providing opportunities for Australian businesses. 

ICN is working with the mining sector on many projects, to help increase opportunities for Australian industry, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

To support ICN, the Australian Government provides funding through its Supplier Access to Major Projects (SAMP) program.

Below are three SAMP projects across Australia, currently underway in the mining sector, where there are plenty of opportunities for Australian SMEs.

Roy Hill iro​n ore

The Roy Hill project will be a world-class iron ore mine and is located 115 km north-east of Newman in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

The mine processing plant, rail and port facilities will be designed to produce 55 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) of Hematite iron ore. The project will also consist of a 344km standard gauge, single line, dedicated heavy-haul railway from the mine site to Port Hedland and two new purpose built berths.

During construction the workforce will peak at 3,600 people and it will have an operational manning of over 2,000 people.

The project will create significant wealth for Australia through the generation of export revenue, employment creation and payment of royalties and taxes.

Mount Peake

TNG Limited’s 100%-owned Mount Peake project is located in the highly prospective Arunta Geological Province, 235km north-north-west of the regional centre of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. 

With the feasibility study due for completion this year, preliminary capital expenditure for stage 1 of the project is estimated at $560m (2.5 Mtpa) with stage 2 warranting a further $151m (5 Mtpa).

The construction phase includes infrastructure such as roads, rail lines, power station, water supply, buildings, mobile equipment, accommodation village and a laboratory.

Construction of the processing plant is scheduled to begin in 2014 with TNG expecting first production by late 2015 plus a sustainable mine life of 23 years.

Analytical and geophysical data collected for the project demonstrated that it has the potential to develop as a significant vanadium project, comparable in size with other similar deposits currently at an advanced stage of evaluation and development in Australia. 

GVK Hancock coal

GVK Hancock coal proposes to develop the Alpha Coal project in the Galilee Basin near Alpha, Central Queensland.

GVK is separately developing the Kevin’s Corner coal project adjacent to the Alpha Coal project.

The Alpha Coal project is an open cut mine which will produce 32 Mtpa export grade thermal coal and the mine life is estimated to be 30 years. 
The first coal is expected by the end of 2015.  The Kevin’s Corner coal project is both open cut and underground mining and again the expected output is 30 Mtpa of coal with a mine life of 30 years. 

It will run 18 months behind Alpha with mining targeted for 2016.

The mines will be supported by a 495 km standard gauge stand-alone rail link from the Galilee Basin to Abbot Point.

This rail link from the Galilee Basin to Abbot Point is the route approved by the Queensland Government and the railway is potentially scalable to haul coal for third party customers.

The scale of the GVK project presents one of the largest coal and infrastructure projects ever built in Australia and with a reported value of $10 billion, will offer enormous opportunity for local suppliers across multiple industry sectors.

Opportunities for all three of these projects are available on ICN Gateway, ICN’s online system that connects buyers and suppliers looking to build partnerships in Australian and New Zealand industries.
This powerful online system currently contains over $247 billion worth of contracts and more than 70,000 suppliers. 

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