Rio Tinto awards rail renewal services contract to Downer

Image: Downer Group

Downer Group has won a five-year rail renewal services contract with Rio Tinto Iron Ore, adding to the track construction and tyre management services it previously provided to the mining major.

The five-year rail renewal services contract comes with an option to extend the agreement by a further five years. Downer has already commenced work on the contract.

Rio’s 16 iron ore mines in the Pilbara, Western Australia are connected to a 1700-kilometre rail network.

Train travel by Rio Tinto surpasses eight million kilometres each year.

Rio Tinto Iron Ore general manager – rail maintenance Matt Baartz said Downer had performed well over a sustained period of time working across its iron ore operations.

Downer, meanwhile, is pleased to expand its partnership with Rio Tinto to include rail renewal services, infrastructure executive general manager Mark Mackay said.

“Our values very strongly align to Rio’s values when it comes to safety, delivery, though leadership and relationships – this includes how we build and grow relationships and partnerships with local suppliers, contractors and the local community,” Mackay said.

The inland rail renewals will use a targeted 35 per cent of local content, including partnerships with local business to develop a rail workshop facility in Pilbara and rail training to improve the skills and capability of local suppliers.