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First Quantum to revive Ravensthorpe with $480m MACA contract

First Quantum Minerals has awarded MACA a $480 million open pit mining contract for the Ravensthorpe nickel project in Western Australia.

The project will consist of open pit mining services including drilling and blasting, and loading and hauling.

First Quantum and MACA signed the contract for an initial five-year term, pushing the contractor’s projected revenue to around $770 million during the 2020 financial year.

MACA expects to commence mobilisation to site in December with operations starting in January.

MACA operations director Geoff Baker said the company was very pleased to have been selected preferred contractor and look forward to developing a long-term relationship with First Quantum at the Ravensthorpe nickel project.

“First Quantum have focussed on local and Aboriginal opportunities in the regions of Albany, Ravensthorpe and Esperance in order to resources the Ravensthorpe project which MACA intend to leverage from,” Baker said.

“This project will generate another 230 jobs bolstering the local and regional communities.”

First Quantum flagged the restart of Ravensthorpe in July, stating it could commence in the first quarter of next year amid improving nickel prices.

The Canadian-based company has commenced initial planning for Ravensthorpe’s restart operations and completed refurbishment of its atmospheric leach reactors since the March quarter.

The Ravensthorpe mine has been placed on care and maintenance since operations were suspended in October 2017.

First Quantum acquired Ravensthorpe from BHP for $US340 million ($493 million) in 2011 after it was shut down in 2009.

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