Government of Western Australia Official Site


FMG announce new Pilbara mine

Premier Mark McGowan welcomed the announcement by Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) to develop the Eliwana mine and rail project in the Pilbara region. FMG made the Final Investment Decision on 28thMay to go ahead with the project which consists of a new mine and ore processing facility, and a 143-kilometre rail spur project.

The company is targeting a construction start in mid-2019, with production to start in December 2020. A definitive feasibility study has been completed by the company, and the approvals process is now underway.

The project could create up to 1,900 jobs during construction, with estimated capital investment of about $1.7 billion. Eliwana, which will replace Fortescue’s depleting Firetail mine, is expected to operate at 30 million tonnes per annum with capacity for up to 50mtpa over a mine life of at least 24 years.

Fortescue’s Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines said: “Development of the Eliwana Project will maintain Fortescue’s low-cost status, providing us with greater flexibility to capitalise on market dynamics while maintaining a minimum 170 million tonnes per annum production rate over 20 years.

This project allows us to commence the supply of Fortescue Premium product to the market from existing operations in the second half of FY19 with volumes increased as Eliwana ramps up to full production. Fortescue has now shipped over one billion tonnes of iron ore in just ten years, generating strong returns from our position at the lowest end of the global cost curve.”

Premier Mark McGowan commented:“FMG’s announcement is welcome news for WA jobs and our local economy. This project alone has the potential to create up to 1,900 construction jobs and provide 500 ongoing jobs once in operation.”