The Western Australian Government has granted final approval for the construction of a multi-user iron ore export facility at the Port of Esperance.

State Transport Minister, Troy Buswell, said the State Government had accepted an Esperance Port Authority board recommendation to start a procurement process to identify a private sector consortium to design, finance, construct and operate a multi-user iron ore facility (MUIOF). 

“Following this initial step, potential proponents will be shortlisted and invited to participate in a RFP process. It is expected the preferred proponent will be identified later this year,” Mr Buswell said.

The Minister said the proposed facility would lead to an expansion of Esperance Port’s iron ore export capacity.  The size of the new facility will be determined by the proponent building the new infrastructure after entering into contracts with miners.

Mr Buswell said that recent market sounding conducted for the Esperance Port Authority indicated that initially it may be commercially viable to develop a facility for an additional 10 to 12 million tonnes per year.

Currently the port has an operating licence to handle 11.5 million tonnes a year. 

“Today’s decision will facilitate growth of the Yilgarn region’s iron ore sector,” Mr Buswell said.

Interested parties have until 5pm on Friday March 1, 2013, to register their interest. More information can be found here