Fortescue Metals Group (Fortescue) is pleased to announce that contracts to the value of A$330 million to date have been awarded to more than 250 Australian business entities as part of the Eliwana Mine and Rail development, of which 80 per cent are Western Australian owned businesses. As further approvals are progressed, it is expected over A$500million in additional contracts will be awarded by the end of 2019.
Significantly, the structural steel fabrication of the overland conveyor, stockyard and train loadout facility, and rail bridge girders will occur within Western Australia. Further steel fabrication work is anticipated to be awarded to local businesses in the coming months.
At an official event celebrating the turning of the first sod of the Eliwana Mine and Rail project, Fortescue’s Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines, also announced the award of a joint venture contract between the Puuti Kunti Kuruma Pinikura (PKKP) Enterprises Pty Ltd and Action Industrial Catering for the catering, administration and general village services at the Eliwana fly camp.
This follows the early mine earthworks contract to Jilpanti Enterprises, a 100 per cent Aboriginal-owned business, as part of a joint venture with Cross Verwijmeren. Fortescue is also working with Muntulgura Guruma Pty Ltd, a 100 per cent Aboriginal owned company, to carry out the access and enabling earthworks to support the Eliwana Rail development.
Ms Gaines said, “Fortescue was built on the vision that by first and foremost creating a strong business, we could create economic opportunities and contribute to thriving local communities.
“This vision is at the heart of the Eliwana development, a US$1.275 billion project which has already generated business and jobs for West Australians. Eliwana will create up to 1,900 jobs during construction and 500 full-time site positions once operational.
“The business opportunities are also substantial. We’re proud to be working with local businesses on the steel fabrication of key pieces of infrastructure and we are committed to supporting Aboriginal and WA businesses, as we have always done,” Ms Gaines said.
Fortescue’s industry leading Aboriginal procurement initiative, Billion Opportunities, recently reached A$2.3 billion in contracts awarded to Aboriginal businesses and joint ventures since the program began in 2011.