Rio Tinto’s Amrun project in Queensland, Australia, has achieved a significant milestone, successfully making the first shipment of bauxite, six weeks ahead of schedule. The USD1.9 billion investment in Amrun will replace production from the depleting East Weipa mine and increase annual bauxite exports by around 10m tonnes. Amrun is expected to reach a full production rate of 22.8m tonnes a year during 2019.
Rio Tinto Aluminium CEO Alf Barrios said: “Bringing Amrun online further strengthens our position as a leading supplier in the seaborne market. We have the largest bauxite resources in the industry and are geographically well positioned to supply China’s significant future import needs, as well as supporting our refinery and smelting operations in Australia and New Zealand.”
At a ceremony on the Western Cape York Peninsula in far north Queensland, more than 80,000 tonnes of bauxite was loaded on to the RTM Weipa bound for Rio Tinto’s Yarwun alumina refinery in Gladstone.