$275m mineral sands mine opens in WA

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WA Premier Mark McGowan has officially opened Iluka Resources’ Cataby mine in the Shire of Dandaragan.

Located approximately 150 kilometres north of Perth, the $270 million mine supported 600 jobs during construction and will sustain around 600 ongoing jobs during the 13-year life of the mine.

Iluka said the Cataby mine will have an annual production of 200,000 tonnes of synthetic rutile (from 370,000 tonnes of ilmenite), 50,000 tonnes of zircon and 30,000 tonnes of rutile.

The mineral concentrate from Cataby will be processed in company’s Narngulu mineral separation plant at Geraldton, and at its operations at Capel, in south west Western Australia.

The Narngulu plant produces zircon and rutile final products, whereas Iluka’s processing facilities at Capel produce around 320,000 tonnes of synthetic rutile per annum.

These mineral sands products are used in a range of industrial and household applications, including pigment, ceramics, titanium metal, water and air purification systems and fibre optics.

Premier McGowan commended Iluka on the opening of the Cataby operation and for continuing to be a significant creator of jobs in Western Australia’s Mid-West and South-West regions.

These mining and processing jobs provide opportunities for regional workers and their families, and will support the local economies of Dandaragan, Capel and Geraldton over many years,” the Premier said.

“It’s exciting to see Western Australia’s continued success as a producer of mineral sands.

“In Iluka’s case, downstream processing sees the value of these products captured here in WA, creating more employment opportunities for Western Australians. I look forward to seeing this industry continue to grow in our State, with growing demand forecast globally.”

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Image credit: https://iluka.com