Polaris Metals NL (POL) is pleased to announce the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Fremantle Ports focussed on finalising the best option for exporting ore from the Yilgarn Iron Ore Project (YIOP) at the bulk berths at Kwinana.
Both parties have agreed to work together to identify the preferred berth option and to negotiate cargo handling and an export facilities agreement if Kwinana is selected as the preferred port option for the YIOP. It has also been agreed to fast track purchase or construction, where appropriate, of any long lead time items necessary for the preferred berth.
In an associated development, Polaris has agreed to take an option over 8 Ha of LandCorp ground adjacent to the proposed new Berth 5 at the Kwinana Bulk Jetty to secure sufficient stockpile and storage space to suit the proposed iron ore export requirements.
Polaris is planning to commence mining Stage 1 of the YIOP in 2010 based on the Carina and Chamaeleon iron ore deposits located 60km north of Koolyanobbing in Western Australia. A recently completed pre-feasibility study confirmed the viability of the project and as a base case, assumed export of iron ore through Fremantle Port’s Kwinana bulk handling facilities.
A number of options have been considered for the port operations including use of existing berths, construction of a new Berth 5 at the Kwinana Bulk Jetty and barging from existing facilities. Construction of Berth 5 at Kwinana would be a key requirement for the YIOP to ultimately export tonnages of 5-10Mtpa. Finalisation of the preferred export option is a key requirement prior to the commencement of the bankable feasibility study that has been recommended. A review of the options is continuing in conjunction with both specialist consulting engineers and Fremantle Ports, in parallel with similar studies on the Port of Esperance.
Securing an option over the LandCorp ground, adjacent to the rail access, ensures access to nearby and strategically well positioned land ideal for the efficient storage and transit of iron ore.
Polaris acknowledges the support and involvement of both Fremantle Ports and LandCorp in developing the best option for export of bulk commodities from Kwinana.