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The giant mining company BHP Billiton, who own the Jimblebar iron ore open pit mine in the Pilbara Region of Western Australia, 41 kilometres east of the mining town of Newman, in conjunction with two minor shareholders, Japanese trading companies, Mitsui and Company Limited and Itochu Corporation, have agreed to both companies increasing their combined shareholding by 15 percent in order to raise $1.5 billion in capital.

Itochu have agreed to increase their shareholding to eight percent and Mitsui to seven percent. This injection of funds will ensure the assets held by the two Japanese traders will continue to operate in a flexible and simple manner. Both companies already own 15 percent of BHP Billiton's other mining, port infrastructure, and railway network in the Pilbara Region.

As a result of the agreement, the two Japanese trading companies will have secured an annual iron ore output of more than five million tonnes that equates to four percent of Japanese iron ore requirements. The Jimblebar Mine has an annual iron ore capacity of 35 million metric tonnes. This brings BHP Billiton's total Pilbara iron ore production of 220 million metric tonnes a year.

Jimblebar is Part of the Giant BHP Billiton Pilbara Presence
Besides owning several iron ore mines in the Pilbara, BHP Billiton also own two ports on the coast to facilitate the export of the iron ore mined, as well as over 1,000 kilometres of railway. It is the second largest miner operating in the mineral rich Pilbara. Global mining company Rio Tinto is the only miner to have bigger operations in the area. BHP began mining iron ore at Newman in 1968 when it opened the Mount Whaleback Mine which is now the largest open pit mine in the world.

Jimblebar Originally Commenced Mining in 1989
The Jimblebar Mine commenced production in March 1989 with an iron ore processing capacity of 14 million tonnes a year through its two stage crusher circuit. When first opened the Jimblebar Mine was known as McCamey's Monster as it was prospector Ken McCamery who discovered the ore body that was acquired by BHP in 1992. Iron ore mined at BHP Billiton's Pilbara mines, that include the Jimblebar open pit, is taken by rail to Port Hedland for exporting overseas.

Jimblebar Expansion Will Greatly Enhance BHP Billiton's Footprint in the Pilbara
BHP Billiton have been expanding its Pilbara operations over many years and the Jimblebar Mine expansion is part of this process. Expansion at the Jimblebar Mine is currently on schedule to be completed in the first quarter of 2014. The money raised through the increased shareholding of the two Japanese trading companies Itochu Corporation and Mitsui and Company Limited will ensure this expansion program is completed as planned. When completed it will increase iron ore production by 35 million tonnes. The expansion program also includes increasing the iron ore processing plant capacity to 55 million tonnes a year. The new Jimblebar Mine that will become effective in early 2014 will be integral in BHP Billiton lifting its Pilbura overall iron ore production to more than 220 million tonnes a year.

Expansion and development at the Jimblebar open cut mine, that includes necessary railway links, rolling stock and mining equipment, has cost BHP Billiton $3.4 billion.

Animation showing all of the Jimblebar infrastructure


BHP Billiton

BHP Billiton have been in the industry for over 150 years & are among the largest producers of major commodities such as aluminium, copper, coal, iron ore, silver & branching out into oil & gas.They have over 100 locations throughout the world & employ more than 100,000 employees & more


BHP Billiton
171 Collins Street
Melbourne, VIC 3000


Phone13 0055 4757
fax03 9609 3015

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