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What does Harmony’s new status mean for Queensland copper?

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Harmony Gold’s Eva copper project near Cloncurry has been given ‘prescribed project’ status. What does this mean for Queensland copper?

The Eva copper project is an iron oxide copper-gold resource Harmony believes is poised to become the largest copper mine in north-west Queensland.

The project is situated on the traditional lands of the Kalkadoon people, 75km north of Cloncurry and 95km north-east of Mount Isa.

Expected to generate up to 1250 jobs during construction operations, Harmony is currently updating a feasibility study for Eva to underpin its proposed development.

The Queensland Government changed the project’s course on Monday when it announced Eva as a ‘prescribed project’ due to its potential social and economic significance for the state.

Declaring a prescribed project means the Queensland Coordinator-General can work with local governments and regulators to help progress it to production.

Queensland Minister for State Development and Infrastructure Grace Grace announced the new status, emphasising the positive impact the project will have on Queensland’s copper sector with plans to provide a new source of copper concentrate for Mount Isa’s copper smelter, as well as supporting the state’s renewable goals.

“Harmony Gold already has key mining approvals for the project and my prescribed project declaration means the office of the Coordinator-General can now provide additional assistance to coordinate remaining approvals,” she said.

“Priorities will include establishing a renewable energy source that can help run mining operations until the project connects to CopperString 2032.”

Harmony chief executive officer Peter Steenkamp said the recognition of Eva’s strategic importance and potential to contribute to the economic development of Queensland supports Harmony’s confidence in the project.

“We appreciate the support of the Queensland Government and all stakeholders who supported our application for ‘prescribed project’ status,” Steenkamp said.

“Our people are our most important asset and this support from the Queensland Government will enable Harmony to continue creating long-term value for all its stakeholders, wherever we operate.”

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