TWO junior miners may join forces to develop their respective iron ore assets in the Pilbara following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Flinders Mines and Brockman Mining Australia will “work in good faith” towards an aggregation agreement – which may include infrastructure and transport solutions – for their iron ore interests and export aspirations from the WA region.
Brockman Australia chief executive Russell Tipper said the potential aggregation of tonnages ensured a critical mass that could further enhance the economic viability of any proposed, shared infrastructure solutions for junior iron ore miners in the Pilbara.
As a result of entering into the MOU, Flinders reported it would work with Brockman with a view to finalise and execute the documents, which would govern the advancement of an aggregation agreement and related transactions. Brockman 100 per cent owns the Marillana and Ophthalmia iron ore projects, and has joint rights to co-develop a 50 million tonne per annum marine port facility at Port Hedland through its interest in North West Infrastructure.
Additionally, Brockman has undertaken a study with Aurizon and Atlas Iron to develop the East Pilbara Independent Rail (EPIR) project, which proposes to build a heavy haulage railway and associated infrastructure to connect certain iron ore mines to the port project.
Flinders is focussed on its wholly owned Pilbara Iron Ore Project (PIOP), which so far contains total measured, indicated and inferred mineral resources of 917mt at a grade of 55.2 per cent iron.
Flinders Mines executive chairman Robert Kennedy said an aggregation of tonnage would place both companies in a strong position to move forward using the proposed marine port facility at Port Hedland, and the EPIR project to deliver
ore to the market.
“The terms of the Flinders-Brockman MOU are currently non-binding and while Flinders has engaged widely with a number of parties potentially interested in providing infrastructure or other product solutions for the PIOP, it is Flinders’
intention to give high priority towards the commitments encapsulated in today’s MOU,” Mr Kennedy said.
Flinders and Brockman plan to form a representative working group; fund their respective internal costs and share of any contractor costs; regularly meet, and where appropriate, jointly present to stakeholders regarding the subject matter of the MOU; and resolve the form of the aggregation arrangement.