Balla Balla a boost to city

Pilbara News - - Opinion - Peter Long Peter Long is the City of Kar­ratha Mayor.

The Balla Balla iron ore project has been in the news lately with the an­nounce­ment of the sign­ing of a mem­o­ran­dum of un­der­stand­ing with a Chi­nese com­pany to build the port and rail com­po­nent.

The project is worth nearly $6 bil­lion in value and in­volves the Flin­ders Mines re­source, just west of the Kar­ratha-Tom Price Road, a 160km rail­way line to the coast and a port at Balla Balla.

The project will be de­vel­oped into a mine, ini­tially pro­duc­ing 10 mtpa, but is fore­cast to soon ex­pand to 50 mtpa.

The port will be a tran­ship­ment fa­cil­ity — a jetty will ex­tend out far enough to ac­cept flat-bot­tomed self-un­load­ing tran­ship­ment ves­sels, which will take the prod­uct out to a ship moored in deep wa­ter.

Citic has a sim­i­lar sys­tem at its port at Cape Pre­ston.

The new Balla Balla port is along the coast from the old, his­toric port and town of the same name, which once served to off­load cop­per from the nearby Whim Creek mine, dis­cov­ered in 1872.

The project will gen­er­ate 3300 con­struc­tion and 900 per­ma­nent jobs.

The City is hop­ing to have the next 50km of the Tom Price Road sealed, which would en­able a drive-in/drive-out workforce based in Kar­ratha.

If this is achieved, there will be a mas­sive boost to the City of more than $1 bil­lion a year.

While all ap­provals have been re­ceived, the due dili­gence process is now hap­pen­ing.

A fi­nal de­ci­sion is to be made in De­cem­ber this year.

Pic­ture: Michael Wil­son

For­mer Pre­mier Colin Bar­nett, here with BBI Group chief ex­ec­u­tive Ni­cholas Cur­tis, chair­man Jon Young and Min­is­ter Bill Marmion, signs a State agree­ment in Jan­uary.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.