The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures show that growth in mineral and petroleum exploration investment in Western Australia is reaching new highs, with base metal exploration more than doubling in WA. Iron ore exploration has also experienced a significant increase of 70% from $160 million to $272 million, with gold rising 12% to $277 million in 2006-07.
Release of the statistics follow a significant amount of overseas interest in WA, with a Chinese-backed mining consortium recently announcing plans for a Pilbara region iron ore project, worth $5.5 billion.
Citic Pacific Mining has also announced plans to construct a 450 mW power station and desalination plant to make iron ore concentrate.
WA Development Minister Eric Ripper and a delegation of Korean businessmen met recently to discuss interest in resource and infrastructure opportunities in the State.