|FMG outlines plans for Nyidinghu|
|THE WEST AUSTRALIAN|
|Tuesday, 26 February 2013 08:33|
Fortescue Metals Group has given the first major insight into the development of its Nyidinghu project, outlining plans for a 30 million tonne-a-year operation from the deposit, which sits about 35km south of its Cloudbreak operations.
In environmental consultation documents released for public comment yesterday, Fortescue said it could see 15 years of production from a Nyidinghu mine, initially at 30mtpa but with capacity to "incorporate peaks in production up to 40mtpa".
Back of the envelope calculations used by industry put rail construction at about $10 million a kilometre, meaning the spur line could cost $800 million to $1 billion, depending on the difficulty of the terrain.
However, a sale of a minority stake in Fortescue's infrastructure could shift that thinking. A part sale would pay down Fortescue's debts and industry sources have speculated a deal with investors could include the potential for further investment to expand the network.
In addition to Nyidinghu, the line could service Brockman Mining's planned Marillana mine and Iron Ore Holding's Iron Valley project, recently returned to the company by Fortescue.
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