Pioneer of the
Australian Iron Ore

MinRes and Hancock team up in the Pilbara

Article by Kristie Allen courtesy of Mining News Net.

MinRes and Hancock will jointly investigate the development of a new iron ore export facility at Port Hedland’s Stanley Point Berth 3 in South West Creek, where Roy Hill would provide services to both MinRes and Hancock for development and operation of the project, including rail haulage and port services.

The companies will form a joint venture to seek approval from the Pilbara Ports Authority to develop and operate an iron ore export facility at South West Creek.

Multiple iron ore players have been vying for the capacity for more than a year.

The long-mooted development was always envisaged as facility for “junior” miners.

MinRes managing director Chris Ellison told reporters at the company’s annual general meeting this month that while COVID-19 had slowed the process, he was hopeful of news before Christmas

Ellison said yesterday the agreement with Hancock and Roy Hill was the first of its kind in the Australian resources industry.

“Our long-stated strategy is to transition from short-life, high-cost mines to lower-cost, long-life operations underpinned by innovative infrastructure solutions,” he said.

“Developing our stranded assets will provide additional growth for MRL’s unique mining services build-own-operate model.”

While co-operation among Pilbara iron ore miners is rare, MinRes has an existing relationship with Hancock via its mining services division.

“We look forward to working with Hancock, Roy Hill, PPA and the state government to progress this project which would help unlock stranded assets in the Pilbara and would create thousands of jobs for West Australians for years to come,” Ellison said.

MinRes has aspirations to lift its annual iron ore production from the current rate of about 20 million tonnes per annum to more than 90Mtpa.

Earlier this month, it said it was shifting its attention more to the A$2.4 billion Ashburton hub, given the South West Creek development was likely still five years away.

MinRes had previously been hoping to break ground on the Marillana and Ophthalmia projects by the end of this year, but won’t until it gets news on the port approval.

Brockman Mining, MinRes’ partner at Marillana and Ophthalmia, welcomed the partnership announcement.

MinRes shares were up 1.2% to A$45.55, close to a two-month high, while Brockman shares surged 17% to 5.5c.