AusRAIL, Market Sectors

Hope Downs rail question lingers

<p>The Hope Downs mining venture must wait to see if its legal bid for access to BHP Billiton’s rail infrastructure is successful after the judge hearing the case reserved his decision.</p> <p>Hope Downs is an iron ore mine jointly owned by Hancock Prospecting and Kumba Resources.</p> <p>The company wants access to BHP Billiton’s Mt Newman Rail Line by building a short rail spur from the Hope Downs mine.</p> <p>This would save millions in infrastructure costs, although a recent study has shown the project is viable even if Hope Downs has to build its own railway.</p> <p>BHP and Hope Downs presented evidence in the Supreme Court of Western Australia last week. </p> <p>Justice John McKechnie reserved his decision and will now consider the evidence. There is no time frame on when he will pass judgment.</p> <p>The Hope Downs site has iron ore reserves totalling around 400m tonnes. The company wants to produce 5m tonnes of export ore in the first year, increasing to 25m tonnes a year within five years.</p> <br />