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Analysis: Amid rising trade tensions, Chinese interests are keen to develop a high-quality deposit in Guinea. Across China and around the clock, furnaces fuelled by Australian iron ore pump out the steel the country needs to build its way out of the coronavirus downturn. For Australia, a lot is at stake. Part of the answer lies at a place called Simandou, deep in the interior of Guinea, in west Africa. It is home to the biggest undeveloped iron ore deposit in the world, which Chinese interests are keen to bring to production as soon as possible. On the most optimistic view, it is five years away from production — and some in the mining industry think 10 years a more likely timeframe.
In the meantime, Australian ore also faces the challenge of increasing production from Brazil, which is struggling with Covid at the same time as its mining industry tries to recover from tailings dam collapses that have killed hundreds of people and left mine operators nervous to dig ore in heavy rain. This has put pressure on Rio Tinto to move forward plans to dig into its half of the deposit and chip in to fund the railway so that it can use it. However, analysts are sceptical that projects such as Simandou can replace Australian ore.
Langcake said the situation had deteriorated since last week, when BIS Oxford Economics put out a note saying restrictions on iron ore imports to China were unlikely. But Australia buys just 1. But while analysts might think an iron ore bypass is unlikely, the consequences would be catastrophic. Australian economy. Could China replace Australian iron ore with metal from Africa?
A worker inspects conveyer belts transporting iron ore at the Fortescue Solomon mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Ben Butler. Thu 3 Dec Does Australia really have to be so strident when it comes to China? Hamish McDonald. . More than 60 Australian coal-carrying ships kept waiting to unload off ports in China. Reuse this content.Metal Australia needs date
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Could China replace Australian iron ore with metal from Africa?