Rudd cops flack from mining boss

Atlas Iron chairman, David Flanagan has spoken out against self fulfilling prophecies blasting prime minister Kevin Rudd’s comments about an end to the mining boom.

Flanagan said Australian politics will play a significant role in the direction of the mining industry over the next 12 to 18 months, the West Australian reports.

"It's so huge, that's why it's so frustrating to have someone like Kevin Rudd call the end of the resources boom because these guys can make it self-fulfilling," Flanagan told ABC radio in Perth.

"If they actually diminish confidence in our sector beyond what is, in reality, a wonderful place to invest, they can deliver an end to a resources boom by telling everyone it's over."

He said Rudd's comments were "pretty destructive" and some thought and consideration would have added value.

"A lot of people think all mining companies make profits and that is rubbish," Flanagan said.

Rudd this week warned Australia’s mining sector is facing new challenges with less demand for resources.

"I believe that what the nation needs now is strong proven national economic leadership to deal with the formidable new challenge Australia now faces with the end of the decade-long China resources boom and its impact on Australian jobs and living standards into the future," he said.

Earlier this year Australian Mining reported Atlas Iron announced a spate of new discoveries that have increased its ore reserves by 21 per cent, with one deposit almost doubling in size.

The new finds increased its Pilbara iron ore reserves to 499 million tonnes.

In May Atlas said it will soon determine whether to build a new mine in the Pilbara by the end of next month after getting final state and federal government environmental approvals.

The company is looking to produce three million tonnes of iron ore a year from its Mount Webber mine. It is expected to commence in 2014.

 The decision to push ahead with the project will be made at the end of June.

Atlas said last year it is still bullish on the future of iron ore mining after posting a full year loss of $114.6 million.

The company pointed to low commodity prices and the high Australian dollar for the losses.

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