Miner’s tar­get un­likely

Pilbara News - - News - Nick Evans The re­porter trav­elled to Roy Hill as a guest of the WA Cham­ber of Min­er­als and En­ergy.

Roy Hill chief ex­ec­u­tive Barry Fitzger­ald has ad­mit­ted the Gina Rine­hart-con­trolled com­pany is un­likely to hit an “ag­gres­sive” tar­get of ramp­ing up its ex­port rate to name­plate lev­els of 55 mil­lion tonnes a year by De­cem­ber.

Roy Hill had ini­tially planned a two-year ramp up to its 55 mil­lion-tonne-a-year run rate, but pulled that for­ward to a far more ag­gres­sive 11 month ramp-up pro­gram as the iron ore price be­gan to fall last year.

But Mr Fitzger­ald con­firmed last week the com­pany was un­likely to reach a 55mtpa run rate by the end of the year, telling re­porters at the Pil­bara project it was likely to be reached early in the new year in­stead.

He said the com­mis­sion­ing of its pro­cess­ing plant had hit fresh prob­lems ear­lier this year, in­clud­ing the un­ex­pected need to fix struc­tural prob­lems in tun­nels at the fa­cil­ity.

Mr Fitzger­ald said he did not think Roy Hill would ex­port 55 mil­lion tonnes of iron ore in 2017, although he be­lieved the com­pany would come very close.

Roy Hill shipped its first load of iron ore in De­cem­ber last year.

Gina Rine­hart’s Han­cock Prospect­ing is the ma­jor­ity share­holder in Roy Hill with a 70 per cent stake.

The $10 bil­lion project 115km north of New­man in­cludes an open pit mine, pro­cess­ing plant, a 344km rail­way line and port in­fra­struc­ture at Port Hed­land.

Pic­ture: Me­gan Pow­ell

Roy Hill Hold­ings chief ex­ec­u­tive Barry Fitzger­ald.

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