Australia’s Fortescue finds large, new iron ore deposit


SYDNEY — Fortescue Metals Group has found a deposit of more than 1 billion tons of iron ore in Western Australia’s Pilbara region that would extend the life of its mining operations, news reports said Saturday.

Fortescue, Australia’s third-largest iron ore producer, announced the discovery in a release issued by the Australian Stock Exchange after the market had closed Friday.

The new formation, named Nyidinghu, is 35 kilometers from Fortescue’s first mine, Cloudbreak.

“The proximity of Nyidinghu to Fortescue’s existing Chichester Hub mining operations and unique high-performance modern infrastructure boosts their collective value significantly,” Fortescue said. “Fortescue is commencing a feasibility study with a view to developing this deposit as rapidly as possible.”

This month, Fortescue announced a sevenfold increase in profits for the six months that ended in December and its first dividend. Fortescue made net profits of AU$310 million (US$310 million) in the first half of the budget year, compared with AU$43 million in the same period a year earlier.