Speech by Mrs Gina Rinehart AO
A very warm welcome to the Pilbara – Australia’s premier iron ore mining region and home to the mega Roy Hill. Indeed, an industry and project of significant importance to our country. And Roy has the highest Australian ownership in the major sectors of our mining industry.
Roy is 70 percent Australian owned, as contrasted to Wesfarmers 21 per cent, Woodside 17.8 per cent, BHP 5.6 per cent, Rio less than 5 per cent, Glencore zero percent, Exxonmobil zero percent, Chevron zero percent, Mitsui & Co zero per cent, Ichthys zero percent, Anglo American zero percent.
What a wonderful sight to see the WHIMS 1.5 project, after investment and too many approvals and permits, complete.
The Wet High Intensity Magnetic Separator plant is a brilliant example of the sort of innovative thinking that defines Roy Hill.
Using magnets, it recovers high grade ultra-fine iron ore from our tailings, which would otherwise have ended up as waste. We are the first to bring this to the Pilbara and to the iron ore mining industry in Australia.
Of course, like our trains, our locomotives and our haul trucks, and like your PPE – it’s bright pink. A visual daily reminder to support breast cancer patients and research.
This dreadful disease is still the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia, with eight women dying from the disease every day – far, far too many, depriving women of their lives, and their children and families, depriving them of their loved ones.
There is much more that needs to be done to improve research and treatments for this frightening and terrible disease.
Can I extend my thanks to all Roy Hill staff and the companies and contractors who have worked so diligently to complete WHIMS 1.5.
Our first WHIMS plant, completed in 2019 was not only the first in West Australia, but also the first pink one in the world.
Today we honour another of my dearest friends, a pioneering leader of Roy Hill and fellow Hancock Board member.
Tad Watroba has been by my side on the Roy Hill mega-project all the way through. We started from very humble beginnings, with very little money for exploration.
Indeed, Tad would remember sleeping under the stars in his swag here with geologist Richard Pacquay.
Tad’s been there through thick and thin with me, and I can assure you, there’s been a lot of thin, but he’s stuck in there with magnificent loyalty, dedication and integrity throughout all adversity.
We’ve gone through inter alia project blockages, and thousands and thousands of permits and approvals.
And on a more positive note, Tad was there with me throughout when we were able to achieve the world’s largest mainland largely green fields mining debt finance. And the largest commercial deal between Australia and South Korea.
With every member of Roy’s help, we can look back with pride as what we all have achieved together delivers thousands of jobs to Australians, billions of dollars to the nation’s economy and helps contribute towards maintaining the high living standards we in Australia are very fortunate to enjoy. In the hope spent well, our taxes contribute to our defence, police, looking after our vets, elderly, hospitals, emergencies, kindergartens and much more.
I’m delighted and it is indeed my honour to announce the christening and naming of the Watroba Wet High Intensity Magnetic Separator Plant.
I invite everyone to give our Tad a huge Pilbara rousing round of applause.