South32 to decide by year’s end whether Eagle Downs has future

A central Queensland coal mine that would employ about 500 people could get a financial investment decision by the end of the year.

Oct 19, 2020, updated Oct 19, 2020
Stanmore has struck a deal over the Wards Well coal tenement (file photo)

Stanmore has struck a deal over the Wards Well coal tenement (file photo)

South32 said it was still on track for a decision on its Eagle Downs joint venture with Aquila Resources.

However, comments made by managing director Graham Kerr earlier this year indicated the company was not keen on developing coal assets despite stating previously that it was an attractive development prospect. The company clarified this to say it related to thermal coal, only. Eagle Downs is metallurgical coal used in steel production.

South32 bought a 50 per cent stake in the project from Vale in 2018, paying $148 million. The project had, by then, been in care and maintenance for three years after a major contractor collapsed.

Eagle Downs is a large, high-quality metallurgical coal development near Moranbah.

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When it was shuttered in 2015, significant infrastructure assets had already been put in place.




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