Mastermyne clinches Appin contract

UNDERGROUND contractor Mastermyne has been awarded a contract for development drivage and outbye services at BHP Illawarra Coal’s Appin area 9 project in New South Wales, as foreshadowed in ILN last week.
Mastermyne clinches Appin contract Mastermyne clinches Appin contract Mastermyne clinches Appin contract Mastermyne clinches Appin contract Mastermyne clinches Appin contract

Courtesy Illawarra Coal

Lou Caruana

The contract will start in March 2013 and has an expected duration of approximately two-and-a-half years.

The works involve development drivage and outbye services and will employ 60 people once fully mobilised, which will include personnel transitioning from the Dendrobium project.

Mastermyne managing director Tony Caruso attributed the success to the long-term relationship with Illawarra Coal.

“Mastermyne has worked safely and productively over a long period of time at both the Dendrobium and West Cliff operations,” he said.

“Like many we have felt the effects of the slowdown across the coal sector last year and we have seen some contraction in our workforce and equipment fleet which will impact in the second half earnings for the 2013 financial year,” he said.

Caruso said the Appin contract was one of several the company had been working on in the lead-up to Christmas and he was confident there would be more contracts added to Mastermyne’s order book over the next three months.

“With this Appin area 9 contract, several other tenders that the company is in discussions on and the solid tender pipeline, we are confident that the Mastermyne Group will continue to build on the FY2014 order book,” he said.

BHP Billiton last year announced the $US845 million Illawarra Coal – Appin area 9 project, which will sustain the West Cliff and Appin mines for 20 years with capacity of 3.5 million tonnes per annum.

It would sustain Illawarra Coal’s production capacity at 9Mtpa.

Appin area 9 will be operational in 2016 and will replace production at the West Cliff mine.

The project includes roadway development, new ventilation infrastructure, new and reconfigured conveyors and other mine services.

The development has received all necessary regulatory approvals and will include upgrades of the longwall machinery to increase the coal cutting rate in line with run of mine coal production at each longwall operation.