Shougang's Marcona expansion, new players to quadruple Peru's iron ore production by 2016 - MEM

Thursday, January 17, 2013

With the expansion of Chinese-owned Shougang Hierro Perú's Marcona mine in Ica region and the entry of three new iron producers into the sector, Peru's mines and energy ministry (MEM) expects to see iron production quadruple by 2016, deputy mines minister Guillermo Shinno said in a local radio interview.

The US$1.2bn expansion of Peru's only producing iron mine is expected to double output to 20Mt/y by mid-2014, Shougang CEO Raul Vera la Torre told BNamericas.

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Furthermore, three new iron producers are soon to enter the scene, which will bring iron ore output in Peru to more than 55Mt/y when all three new producers are operating.

Among the new entrants is Chinese Nanjinzhao Group, whose US$3.3bn Pampa de Pongo project in Arequipa region expects to produce 15Mt/y of iron starting in 2015.

Australian Strike Resources' (ASX: SRK) Peruvian subsidiary Apurimac Ferrum is also developing the US$2.3bn Hierro Apurímac , set to produce 20Mt/y, and Toronto-based Cuervo Resources (CNSE: FE) is drilling at its Cerro Ccopane iron project in Cuzco region.

Shougang was the fifth largest investor in Peru's mining sector in 2011, according to MEM, and has been working on its Marcona expansion since 2009. The company turned out 6.7Mt in 2012 at Marcona, as the mine's 10Mt/y installed capacity was impacted by strikes.