The Australian Foreign Investment Review Board has approved a deal for Chinese backing for Altona Mining’s $200 million-plus Cloncurry copper project.
Altona managing director Alistair Cowden said FIRB approval was a major condition precedent to closing the transaction.
Sichuan Railway Investment Group proposes to fund the Cloncurry project through China Sichuan International Investment, its Hong Kong subsidiary.
The approval of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council of the Sichuan Province of the People’s Republic of China is also required for SRIG, through CSII, to make the investment in the project.
The joint venture intends to develop a 7 million tonne per annum open-pit mine and flotation plant capable of producing 39,000 tonnes per annum copper and 17,000 ounces gold over an initial mine life of 11 years.
The project, 95km north-east of Mount Isa, is expected to involve about 300 construction jobs and sustain about 280 new direct jobs in operation.
Mr Cowden has previously indicated that Altona preferred to go local where possible for workforce and supply needs, but only if the skills it sought were there and the price was competitive.