5 April, 2021
Metro Mining to pick up where it left off
Cape York bauxite company Metro Mining will recommence operations this month after shutting down early in 2020 due to COVID-19.
By MATT NICHOLLS
Operations are planned to resume on April 19, with the company aiming to mine and ship four million wet metric tonnes of bauxite between April and December.
Prior to the shutdown, the mine’s four million wet metric tonnes target was also affected by COVID-19 despite record mining and shipping rates and lower operational costs.
Metro employs more than 120 people at Bauxite Hills, located north of Mapoon on the Skardon River, with an additional 130 people to be employed by contractors who provide services to the mine.
Metro Mining managing director and chief executive Simon Finnis welcomed the resumption of operations.
“The Metro team and our contracting partners are keen to get back to work and we are in the fortunate position of being able to welcome back many people who have experience working at Bauxite Hills before,” he said in a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange.
“We have implemented several operational changes that will improve efficiencies, and will continue to focus on mining and shipping rates and lowering operational costs, as we are always looking for improvements in our systems and processes.
“From what we’re seeing in the market and from our ongoing negotiations, the demand for Metro bauxite is returning, and confidence is returning to the market more widely.”
The initial 2.3 wet metric tonnes of bauxite will be provided to Xinfa.
Metro Mining has remained committed to its Metro stage two expansion, a six million wet metric tonne strategy as part of Bauxite Hills’ long-term development.
The Metro stage two expansion will also see the construction and commissioning of a floating terminal to allow for faster loading for vessels.