BHP to shut down NSW’s largest coal mine, Worley strikes deal with Chevron and Fortescue teams up with Liebherr

BHP Mt Arthur coal mine NSW largest coal mine Worley Chevron Fortescue Liebherr Rio Tinto Link Administration PEXA ASX FMG LNK PXA RIO WOR
BHP plans to close its Mt Arthur coal mine by 2030 after having no luck in finding a buyer.

BHP Group (ASX: BHP) has announced it will shut down its Mt Arthur coal mine in New South Wales after no buyers were sought for the state’s largest coal mine, which has been operating since 2002.

The mine will continue to operate until at least 2026, with BHP expected to extend the operations until 2030 at the latest.

The mining giant has been on the hunt for a buyer for the best part of two years with no luck, as the value of the mine has plummeted in recent years, once being valued at $2 billion.

After the closure of the site, rehabilitation efforts are expected to take between 10 to 15 years.

BHP minerals president Edgar Basto said the company explored all options for the mine, near Muswellbrook, including divestment and future investment requirements.

”Seeking approval to continue mining until 2030 avoids closure in 2026 and enables BHP to balance the value and risk of those considerations and our commitments to our people and local communities,” he said.

With over 2,000 individuals employed at the Mt Arthur coal mine operations, the news to extend its operations to 2030 is good news according to Upper Hunter MP Dave Layzell.

“There are a lot of jobs that are involved at Mt Arthur, and I need to make sure that those jobs are maintained for the foreseeable future,” he said.

“It’s good that they [BHP] go through the extension.”

Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) has delivered its first ore from the Gudai-Darri iron ore mine operations in the Pilbara, Western Australia.

The mining giant brought online its first greenfield mine in the region in over a decade.

The ore was transported by trail to the port via autonomous AutoHaulTM trains, which trekked the new 166-kilometre rail line.

The full production capacity of the mine is expected to be in fruition by 2023.

Rio Tinto Iron Ore chief executive officer Simon Trott said the breakthrough at the Gudai-Darri mine was extremely encouraging for the company.

“The commissioning of Gudai-Darri represents the successful delivery of our first greenfield mine in over a decade, helping to support increased output of Pilbara Blend, our flagship product,” he said.

“It sets a new standard for Rio Tinto mine developments through its deployment of technology and innovation to enhance productivity and improve safety.”

The operations showing results is a positive for the company, after setting the mine up costed roughly $800 million more than originally expected, due to inflation and other factors.

Link Administration

Link Administration’s (ASX: LNK) share price is plunging this week after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) raised concerns over Dye & Durham’s (D&D) proposed purchase of the company.

The ACCC alleged the proposed acquisition would align PEXA (ASX: PXA), provider of electronic lodgement network services, with D&D, a major supplier of software to lawyers and conveyancers, increasing vertical integration within the industry.

ACCC deputy chair Mick Keogh said the acquisition was relevant to everyone.

“Given PEXA’s position as the only fully operational electronic lodgement network, the ACCC will closely scrutinise any transaction that would result in vertical integration between PEXA and other industry participants,” he said.

ACCC concerns raised are that D&D and PEXA are able to engage in mutual preferential dealing that would impact existing competition.

In an attempt to halt panicking traders, the Link board urged it is a “preliminary view … and is not a final decision”.

“The Link Group Board continues to unanimously recommend that Link Group shareholders vote in favour of the proposed acquisition,” it said.

The company has since hinted at potential litigation in an English court.

Fortescue Mining Group

Fortescue Mining Group (ASX: FMG) has entered into a partnership with German-Swiss equipment manufacturer Liebherr to develop green technology-based trucks that will haul iron ore from its mining operations.

The Perth-based mining giant will purchase 120 of the trucks, replacing 45% of the existing cartel in a bid to decarbonise its truck-hauling operations by 2030.

Fortescue hopes to have the trucks available and in operation by 2025.

Fortescue founder and chief executive officer Andrew Forrest said the company can achieve its ambitious goal of producing 15 million tonnes a year of green hydrogen by 2030 through driving down costs used in automation, among other means.

“If you automate, you deeply increase efficiency, you lower costs and you can employ more people to expand your operations. That has been the key to Fortescue’s success,” he said.

Worley

Australian-American engineering company Worley (ASX: WOR) has been awarded a 10-year deal with US energy giant Chevron.

The deal incorporates the provision of multiple services to its portfolio of onshore and offshore assets in various places around the world.

Worley chief executive officer Chris Ashton said it’s a great opportunity to help both companies thrive.

“We are pleased to be supporting Chevron’s assets worldwide, consistent with our purpose of delivering a more sustainable world,” he said.

Worley will offer its engineering services and anything project-related in order to fully optimise ways of operating and improve efficiencies.

This news comes after Worley, just last month, inked a three-year deal with Shell.

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