Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) has reported an 11.5 per cent decrease in the amount of iron ore shipped in the March quarter compared with the same period last year.
The lower shipments are a result of the ongoing problems mining companies are still dealing with following heavy rain and floods.
FMG is hoping to make up for the reduced shipment and expect a record 12 million tonnes to be shipped in the current June quarter, boosted by the completion of its Christmas Creek processing facility in Western Australia.
The full year production rate for FMG will be boosted by Christmas Creek to a 55 million tonne target.
The miner reported a shipment of 8.37 million tonnes of iron ore in the March quarter, down from the 9.45 million in the same period the previous year.
Costs have also increased for the company, partly due to the strong Australian dollar, it says.
FMG chief financial officer Stephen Pearce said iron ore prices are still strong, in contrast to analysts’ predictions that prices would soften.
"We are enjoying a higher iron ore price even though we’re in a little bit of pain in our operating costs,” he said.
Twiggy defends native title meeting
Head of Fortescue Metals Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest has also defended his company’s conduct during a meeting with native title holders in the Pilbara.
Opposition leader Eric Rapper labeled the controversial meeting a “shambles” and wants the issue dealt with in Parliament.
Forrest maintains that the majority of Indigenous community members at the meeting were satisfied with the outcome.
"I thought it was a superb meeting, it was a very tough meeting and the community voted 126 – 0 for opportunity and responsibility over welfare," he told the ABC.
The Yindjibarndi people, who own the land FMG wants to mine a part of, say they are not being heard in the debate.