West Australian mines minister Norman Moore was on the scene as the Mineral and Metals Group drilled the first sod at its Golden Grove copper mine expansion.
The mine will go from underground to an open cut pit.
Already the state’s largest copper producer, this $22 million mine expansion will boost operations and provide more jobs.
According to Moore, the development will add two more years to the mine’s life.
It currently employs more than 550 workers.
"Last financial year, copper was worth $1.3billion to the State economy, a 13 per cent increase compared to the previous financial year," Moore said.
"Golden Grove contributed significantly, producing more than 33,000 tonnes in 2010."
He went on to say that this "expansion is a significant milestone in the life of the mine which has been in continuous operation since 1990 and holds a very bright future in terms of new discoveries in the Mid-West".
The open cut mine will be located above the existing underground workings at Golden Grove’s Gossan Hill mine, with full production scheduled for early next year.