Reactivation of South Australia’s Port Augusta as a bulk handling port has drawn a step closer with iron ore miner Havilah Resources signing a Memorandum of Understanding for use of export facilities.
Havilah has signed with Port Augusta Operations (PAO), which will hold a 99-year lease over the former Port Playford land and port terminal facilities near Port Augusta on the eastern side of the Spencer Gulf.
The site includes an existing rail loop, unloading facility, sea wall, roads and storage sheds. PAO is in the process of developing the facilities into a modern iron ore export terminal that will involve refurbishment, upgrading and certain other transhipment arrangements.
Upon completion of the port development PAO will provide port and transhipment services for iron ore, said Havilah. The company’s technical director Dr Chris Giles said PAO’s facility was approximately 300 km by existing rail link from Havilah’s Braemar iron ore deposits, “so it potentially provides a favourable logistical solution for us.”
He continued: “Our Maldorky and Grants iron ore deposits in turn are located in close proximity to the transcontinental rail line, meaning reduced capital expenditure on logistics.
“Given the almost zero overburden, soft nature of the iron ore and its amenability to upgrade to a high yield, high quality 65% iron product, we think the availability of this new port facility will potentially help to make our iron ore deposits internationally competitive,” said Giles.
PAO is an independently operating arm of Cu-River Mining, the iron ore magnetite company that last year unveiled a A$250M plan for a global port facility at the former Flinders Power site capable of handling up to 15 Mtpa of iron ore, grain and other commodities.