Ship­ment car­ries hopes of econ­omy

Il­menite from Goondicum mine is des­tined for South Korea

Central and North Burnett Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

THE first ship­ment of il­menite left Belridge’s Goondicum mine yes­ter­day morn­ing.

The mine, just 50km north­east of Monto, started pro­duc­tion on Au­gust 2. The 6500 tonnes is bound for South Korea, with the next ship­ment of 8000 tonnes set to leave for Ja­pan on Novem­ber 20.

Deputy Premier and Mem- ber for Cal­lide Jeff Seeney said he was grate­ful for the ef­fort made by Belridge to cre­ate op­por­tu­ni­ties for Monto. “This is great for the re­gion. It may be small in min­ing terms, but it’s a huge boost to the lo­cal econ­omy,” Mr Seeney said.

“Monto is a small community and the ad­di­tion of these jobs will make a big con­tri­bu­tion to the area’s econ­omy.

“The town suf­fered badly when the mine closed, and ev­ery­one in the dis­trict is hop­ing the re-opened mine will be suc­cess­ful.

“This first ex­port ship­ment from the mine in­di­cates there is ev­ery like­li­hood of that.”

Mine site man­ager Wicky Mof­fatt said it was now a wait­ing game.

“We an­tic­i­pate ex­port­ing 7000 tonnes ev­ery month, mainly to Ja­pan,” he said.

“At this stage it is dif­fi­cult to say if we will ex­pand but an ad­di­tional source of rev­enue is the phos­pho­rus-based apeti­tie, one of the by-prod­ucts of il­menite which is cur­rently be­ing sold to a fer­tilser com­pany in New SouthWales.”

Mr Mof­fatt said any ex­pan­sion of the busi­ness would be good for Monto. “All our em­ploy­ees live locally and will spend their money with lo­cal busi­nesses,” he said.

Il­menite is used for paint fillers, weld­ing rods and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal prod­ucts.

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