Fe Limited (ASX:FEL) is progressing its JWD West Wiluna Iron Ore Project in Western Australia, having begun work this week to refurbish offices and other infrastructure at the existing exploration camp with the goal to begin early site works by the end of the month.
Executive chairman Tony Sage said it was exciting to see all the pieces coming together at the project.
He said: “I’m looking forward to seeing works on the ground continuing to ramp up over the coming weeks.
“The iron ore market remains strong, particularly for high-grade lump material that we envisage to produce.
“We will continue to push hard to finalise the remaining operational contracts so we can join the ranks of iron ore producers.”
The company aims to begin shipping iron ore product in the current quarter, alongside an assessment of second-phase mining at the project, which it hopes to begin in the September quarter.
Camp accommodation contract
The company has executed a camp accommodation contract with Salt Lake Potash Ltd (ASX:SO4) (LON:SO4) (OTCMKTS:WHELF) (FRA:W1D) to occupy up to 68 construction rooms at their Lake Way Village, which is some 30 kilometres from the JWD Project - allowing easy access to site for FEL’s contractors and employees.
This contract provides FEL with a cost-effective and immediate camp solution, with no upfront capital charge and a competitive operating rate achieved through economies of scale that result from both companies occupying a larger facility.
Crushing and screening LOI
FEL has executed an LOI with experienced crushing and screening contractor Rocktivity, with the intention to appoint them as the crushing and screening contractor for the project.
A full form contract targeted is set to be completed within the next 30 days.
The LOI enables Rocktivity to lock in the necessary plant and people for the FEL task.
Early works activities
Following on from the previously executed LOI with mining contractor Big Yellow, the parties have agreed on a scope for preliminary earthworks and clearing to prepare the site in advance of mining.
The contractor plans to mobilise shortly with the commencement of works targeted before the end of the month.
Mobilisation of the full mining fleet is expected to occur in the first half of May upon a formal decision to mine occurring.
In addition to early earthworks, work has commenced to refurbish offices and other infrastructure at the existing JWD exploration camp.
This work will provide the JWD Project with a mining operations centre (MOC) and has a scope of around $250,000.
Final environmental approvals received
The company has now received approval of an administrative amendment to its JWD mining proposal relating to the location of the crushing and screening plant.
This now finalises all necessary environmental approvals for the commencement of mining activities at the JWD Project.
The company has finalised all necessary environmental approvals for the commencement of mining activities at the JWD Project.
Water drilling undertaken
FEL has been conducting a water exploration campaign in the vicinity of the JWD deposit for the purpose of supplying water for mining operations.
To date, two successful bores have been drilled and are in the process of being developed into production bores.
The company envisages these bores will provide sufficient water for the commencement of mining operations, with additional drilling planned in the vicinity of the mine access road to assist in dust suppression once haulage commences.
Strengthening management team
In addition, the company is pleased to welcome experienced iron ore executive Matthew Ramsden, joining the team as the general manager operations and with responsibility for operations from pit to port.
Ramsden joins the company after more than a decade with Atlas Iron in a variety of senior technical and operational roles, most recently as general manager technical services and integrated planning where he was responsible for operational readiness and the execution of the recently commissioned Sanjiv Ridge operation.
Management incentive options issue
The company has been successful in attracting talent from major companies on cash salaries at or below what they could achieve in the wider market on the basis that they can participate with shareholders in the upside that their performance generates.
FEL will seek approval for the issue of options to key personnel, including executive directors Tony Sage and Mark Hancock at an upcoming shareholder meeting.
These options will have an exercise price of 6 cents and will only vest on meeting of key operational milestones which will be described in the notice of meeting.