Macmahon tipped for largest ever contract

PERTH (miningweekly.com) – Iron-ore giant Fortescue Metals has named ASX-listed Macmahon Holdings as the preferred contractor for the expansion of its Christmas Creek mine, in the Pilbara.

If awarded, the five year contract, valued at around A$1.8-billion, would be Macmahon’s largest ever mining contract.

The contract would require Macmahon to operate and maintain the fleet required to deliver opencut mining services at the Christmas Creek mine, with most of the fleet supplied by Fortescue. Work was expected to ramp up to full production by mid-2013.

Macmahon said that mobilization to the site would start under a limited notice to proceed, and added that negotiations regarding the final contract were continuing and would likely be completed by the end of November.

Fortescue Metals Group – Pilbara mining jobs revealed

Keeping a watchful eye over the activities of the biggest mining companies in Australia is important if you want to know where the mining jobs are in the Pilbara. For people looking to get into the mines, the financial reports produced by the big mining companies reveal clues and insights into their current and future mining activities. This information is very handy for people looking to get into the mines, because reading between the lines can uncover some real mining job opportunities.

Here are the highlights from Fortescue Metals Group for the period ending September 2012…

  • Quarterly shipments of 16.1 million tonnes (mt) slightly above guidance;
  • Liquidity and maturity profile enhanced with a US$5.0 billion (bn) Senior Secured Credit
  • Average realised CFR sales price of US$98 per dry tonne (dt), reflecting the decrease in global iron ore prices
  • Average C1 cost of US$49.44 per wet tonne (wt), up 7% from the prior quarter
  • Commissioning of the second train unloader, increasing overall port capacity to 115mt
  • First ore processed through the second ore processing facility (OPF) at Christmas Creek, marking the ramp up to more than 50mtpa from Christmas Creek and the expansion of the Chichester operations to 95mtpa by the end of the December 2012 quarter
  • Approval received to develop the fifth berth at Anderson Point; and
  • Total expansion expenditure as at end September 2012 of US$6.1bn for infrastructure and US$0.7bn for mine fleet with cash on hand as at end September 2012 of US$2.4bn.

Pilbara Iron Ore Mining Developments

Christmas Creek phase 2 expansion
The September 2012 quarter also saw the completion of much of the infrastructure associated with the expansion including the new Christmas Creek Airstrip, expanded Christmas Creek power station, key stockyard upgrades and power distribution. Early mining works for the expansion have progressed well and stocks are ready to ramp up production in line with the OPF. Delivery of heavy mobile equipment to support the ramp up continues with additional Cloudbreak resources reallocated to support this activity.

  • US$1 billion project budget
  • Committed contracts US$0.8bn

Solomon 60mtpa

  • US$3.2 billion project budget
  • Committed contracts US$2.9bn

A key feature of the Solomon development is the extensive use of modules and all modules for the crushing hubs have been received and installed. In addition, half the modules for the Firetail OPF have arrived in Port Hedland, with 269 of them now delivered to site. Modules are being successfully installed, conveyors are being completed and the train loading system has been installed in the stockyard.

In September, Fortescue awarded Leighton Contractors the mining and operations contract for the Firetail deposit. The US$1.5 billion five-year contract will deliver whole-of-mine management at Firetail, including operating and maintaining the mining fleet, ore handling plants and associated infrastructure.

View a list of Leighton mining jobs on SEEK.com.au

This includes a commitment by Leighton’s to engage graduates of Fortescue’s Indigenous training and employment program VTEC, and to support Fortescue’s commitment to provide opportunities for Aboriginal contractors and joint ventures to further expand Indigenous employment opportunities.

Fortescue has also committed US$2.1 billion to its port expansion project at Port Hedland in Western Australia, as well as committed contracts worth US$1.9 billion for its rail expansion project.  The Rail project remains on schedule to deliver the two key components of the track duplication along the existing mainline track and the rail spur to the new Solomon iron ore mine.