Magnetite Strategy to more than double number of iron ore mines in SA

8 December

Mineral Resources Minister Tom Koutsantonis has launched South Australia’s Magnetite Strategy, which aims to more than double the number of magnetite mines in the State in less than 15 years.

Released to industry at the South Australian Exploration and Mining Conference at the Adelaide Convention Centre this morning, the Magnetite Strategy seeks to attract the investment required to transform the State’s in-ground iron assets into high-volume products to supply energy efficient steelmakers.

Four actions in the Strategy will guide the Government’s interaction with companies to develop resources and regional infrastructure and build community support for an expanded industry.

South Australia’s Magnetite Strategy has been developed with industry and the community to guide the expansion of magnetite product output to 50 million tonnes a year by 2030.

South Australia is endowed with 44 per cent of the nation’s magnetite resource creating an opportunity to widen the number of producers from the current GFG Alliance and CU-River Mining Australia to several new projects in the Far North, Mid North and Eyre Peninsula.

The Strategy will promote South Australia’s high-grade, low-impurity magnetite products to global steelmakers and work with mining companies to ensure local businesses and communities can share in the economic activity generated by the expansion of the industry.

As part of the Strategy, the Government has created the Central Eyre Iron Project Task Force to ensure third parties benefit from Iron Road’s proposed $4.5 billion investment in Australia’s largest magnetite mine linked by rail to a new deep-water port on Spencer Gulf.

Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said increasing global demand for more energy efficient, high-grade magnetite has created an opportunity for South Australia to unlock the potential of its substantial magnetite assets.

“South Australia already has two magnetite exporters and this Strategy will enable us to more than double that number by encouraging investment in several world-class projects,” Mr Koutsantonis said.

“By attracting $10 billion of investment to develop our magnetite assets, we can strengthen and diversify our economy to create jobs, boost exports and generate new business opportunities for regional communities and traditional landowners.

“Not only do we want to attract investment, we want to ensure we maximise the benefits to the South Australian community and build the State’s international reputation as a reliable supplier of high-quality magnetite products.

“The Magnetite Strategy also captures the potential to transform Whyalla under the new ownership of the mines and steelworks so South Australia can continue to play a key role in the nation’s steelmaking capacity.”