Published On: Thu, May 20th, 2021

South Flank iron ore project : BHP achieves first ore from $3.6bn project

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BHP has started production from the South Flank iron ore project in Australia, which has been developed with an investment of $3.6 billion.

The mining giant had achieved the first ore from the central Pilbara region project, within three years of approving it.

BHP, which has an 85% stake in the iron ore project, is partnered by Japanese firms – Itochu and , which hold stakes of 8% and 7%, respectively.

The South Flank iron ore project will have a production life of 25 years. It will compensate for the 80Mtpa Yandi iron ore mine, which has been in production since 1991, and is set to be closed.

BHP achieves first ore from $3.6bn South Flank iron ore project

BHP achieves first ore from $3.6bn South Flank iron ore project. Photo courtesy of BHP.

According to BHP, the is an expansion of the nearby existing Mining Area C infrastructure. The Australian iron ore project saw the construction of a crushing and screening plant, stockyard and train loading facilities and also involved procurement of new mining fleet along with the execution of other activities for mine development and pre-strip.

The South Flank iron ore project and the Mining Area C will have a combined production of 145 million tonnes of iron ore per annum.

Location of the South Flank iron ore project

Map showing South Flank iron ore project in Australia

Map showing South Flank iron ore project in Australia. Image courtesy of ITOCHU Corporation.

BHP management comments on the South Flank iron ore project milestone

Edgar Basto – BHP President Minerals Australia, commenting on the South Flank iron ore project, said: “South Flank is Australia’s largest new iron ore mine in over 50 years and has been delivered safely on time and on budget. South Flank’s high quality ore will increase WAIO’s average iron ore grade from 61 to 62 per cent, and the overall proportion of lump from 25 to 30-33 per cent.

“The project has created more than 9000 direct and indirect jobs during construction, and will provide more than 600 operational roles through its life.

“South Flank’s ore will supply global steel markets for the next 25 years, helping to build electricity, transport and urban infrastructure across the globe. And its high quality ore will have an important role in helping BHP’s customers lower their greenhouse gas emissions.”

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