The establishment of a Victorian copper mine will create up to 200 regional jobs, Southern Grampians Shire Council says.
Northern Platinum has acquired BCD Resources’ mineral tenements in Stavely east of Hamilton, ABC reported.
The company says it will spend the next two years assessing the copper resource.
“If our exploration is successful in identifying enough additional copper mineralisation and this then leads to a development decision,” Northern Platinum director, Chris Cairns said.
“Further exploration success will be required to ensure the feasibility of the project and this will take up to two years from the point of initial exploration before a final decision can be made to proceed to develop the site.”
To establish a working copper mine, Northern Platinum will need about 140 construction workers and 60 permanent staff would be required to run the operations of the mine.
“It would be our company’s preference to employ locals rather than import staff from interstate, which would be a huge boost in employment for the region,” he said.
The Southern Grampians mayor, Albert Calvano, said access to infrastructure and labour makes the region very attractive.
"Being so close to the Oakland wind farm and also access to rail and our skilled workforce … the key factors for the potential development on site look great," he said.
Calvano added that the established community is another plus for the mine’s long term future.
"Also to the amenities we have in the shire, such as education and health facilities of the shire that are very important factors in attracting and maintaining [a] skilled workforce."
The Stavely tenement was discovered in 2008; past exploration had revealed multiple copper deposits that occur with only a shallow covering of soil.
“Our initial projections indicate more than 10,000 tonnes of concentrate per annum could be shipped to Japan, China or Korea over the life of the mine,” Cairns said.