This week we’re looking into the reasons why the north west minerals provence will weather the downturn and go on to prosper. Today we’re looking at emerging resources projects …
MMG recently announced it would bring the Dugald River zinc project into production in 2018 at an expected cost of $1 billion, and the planned $294 million development of the Little Eva deposit has a similar timeline.
Then there is the planned construction of the $800 million North East Gas Interconnector
(NEGI) Pipeline, to link NT gas to eastern gas markets via Mount Isa by 2018.
As well as being a major project on its own, the NEGI gas pipeline will add certainty for Incitec
Pivot’s Phosphate Hill operations and Mr Lynch believed it should help bring new mines online by providing a more competitive energy market.
While industry sources have expressed concerns about the region’s project pipeline reducing
to a dribble, the bigger picture is one of promise – with the North West Minerals Province
hosting an estimated 75 per cent of Queensland’s proven metalliferous resources such as
copper, silver, lead and zinc.Vast areas of prospective ground are still considered under-explored.
Altona Mining managing director Alistair Cowden describes the potential of the Mount Isa-
Cloncurry area as superb.
The area had a 100-years-plus history of mining and hosted major mines and deposits at areas
including Mount Isa, Duchess, Cannington, Ernest Henry, Mary Kathleen, Dugald River, Little
Eva and Osborne, he said.
“Such an area of the earth’s crust is clearly special and where man has found value in the past,
he will do so again. I expect we will still be mining deposits and new discoveries in 50 years,” Mr Cowden said