Orica claims BHP, Roy Hill explosives contracts

The Roy Hill site. Image: Roy Hill

Orica has confirmed that it is the new explosives supplier for BHP and Roy Hill at their iron ore operations in the Pilbara region.

In an operational review, Orica reported that it secured contracts for the supply of ammonium nitrate to the miners during the first half of the 2019 financial year.

Orica replaces Incitec Pivot as the explosives supplier for BHP and Roy Hill. Incitec Pivot confirmed in recent months that its contracts for ammonium nitrate with the miners were due to end.

After securing the Pilbara contracts, Orica expects its Burrup Technical Ammonium Nitrate (TAN) plant will “contribute positively” to the company’s earnings this financial year, before ramping up to full utilisation rates in early 2020.

Orica said the TAN plant would be operational towards the end of the financial year, but added it was currently overcoming some concerns with the project.

“The joint venture operating partner, Yara, is addressing issues related to the construction quality of heat exchangers which have shown some premature cracking,” Orica said in an ASX announcement.

“A full site outage of the upstream ammonia plant, owned by Yara, is planned over the month of July as part of the routine, multi-year maintenance program.”

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