Incitec revisits Pilbara explosives plant

Incitec Pivot has submitted pre feasibility studies for its Burrup nitrates plant.

Incitec Pivot is revisiting plans to construct a $1 billion explosives plant in Western Australia.

An Incitec spokesperson told Australian Mining that a pre-fesabiilty study has already begun on the 350 000 tonne per annum ammonium nitrate plant in the Burrup Peninsula, with the explosives maker submitting the applications to the Government.

It is understood that the construction of the plant is due to the resurgence of the West Australian mining industry.

The company aims to begin plant construction in 2012, and to produce nitrate by 2014.

The applications for the pre-feasibility study come on the back of Incitec restarting its previously stalled Moranbah ammonium nitrate plant, which is expected to commence production next month, the spokesperson said.

While the exact cost of the Burrup plant is not yet known, it is expected to be slightly greater than the Moranbah plant, which is slated to produce only 330 000 tonnes of nitrates annually.

Although Incitec is revisiting previously shelved operations, it is not considering restarting the closed Cockle Creek operations as it is focused on nitrates rather than fertilisers.

Incitec and Orica currently supply half of the explosives used in the Pilbara region.

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