Atlas Iron is the first company to utilise Western Australia’s third party access agreement, using Fortescue Metals Group Herb Elliott Port in Port Hedland to load and send a shipment of iron ore.
According to a release issued by Fortescue, Atlas Iron loaded the Panamax sized Great Wisdom on Thursday 5 December.
“The third party access loading of the Atlas shipment marks an historic day for the Western Australian iron ore industry,” Fortescue’s executive director of operations Graeme Rowley said.
“The shipment proves third party access can work. Atlas has been able to access infrastructure on commercial terms rather than duplicating extensive shiploading systems or relying on Government built Infrastructure.
“The regional, state and national economies will benefit from the extra export revenue that has been generated, and of course, Fortescue has generated additional income from the company’s infrastructure investment,” he said.
The additional income could not have come at a better time for Fortescue who recently announced that changed operating conditions has forced the company to exercise suspension of all its long term Cost and Freight (CFR) shipping contracts.
According to the company’s secretary Rod Campbell, the changed arrangements will not affect Fortescue’s marketing program and shipped product volume.
“To date, approximately two-thirds of Fortescue’s sales have been on CFR terms, however, this is likely to be reduced to around one-third,” Campbell said.