Australian Mines to appoint engineering contractor by 2020

Image: Australian Mines

The Queensland Government is offering funding for Australian Mines to support the Sconi cobalt-nickel-scandium project in North Queensland.

The support package is conditional upon Australian Mines executing an offtake agreement for its entire nickel sulphate and cobalt sulphate offtake by September this year.

The company is also required to deliver and have its project execution plan approved by the state government during the same period.

In addition, the Queensland Government has stated that Australian Mines needs to obtain sufficient financing for Sconi’s construction and appoint an engineering, procurement and construction management contractor by the end of the year.

The funding will be made available to Australian Mines should the company complete the construction of the Sconi project by July 2023, and hire at least 191 Queenslanders by the following year.

The offer follows the Australian Mines’ receipt of a prescribed project status for its Sconi project last year.

“I am highly appreciative of the Queensland Government’s offer to broaden its ongoing support of the Sconi project,” Australian Mines managing director Benjamin Bell said.

“… We also believe the timetable and terms are aligned with Australian Mines’ expectations for the development of Sconi at this stage.

“… The development of Sconi would provide significant economic, employment and infrastructure benefits to Greenvale and northern Queensland for, at least, the next three decades.”

Australian Mines aims to allocate 90 per cent of its operational expenditure throughout the life of the Sconi project to local businesses.

The Sconi project is envisioned to produce 1.4 million tonnes of nickel sulphate and 200,000 tonnes of cobalt sulphate over its 30-year mine life.

Queensland’s Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher said Sconi had the potential to support the regional economy and hundreds of jobs.

“That’s why the Palaszczuk Government is proud to support the project as part of Queensland’s plan for economic recovery,” Butcher said.

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