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Anglo American starts longwall mining at Aquila – a milestone

Anglo American has announced that the construction and commissioning of the Aquila metallurgical coal mine in Central Queensland in Australia is in its final stage. Photo: File

Anglo American has announced that the construction and commissioning of the Aquila metallurgical coal mine in Central Queensland in Australia is in its final stage. Photo: File

Published Feb 10, 2022

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ANGLO American has announced that the construction and commissioning of the Aquila metallurgical coal mine in Central Queensland in Australia is in its final stage.

Aquila mine had achieved its first longwall shear of steel-making metallurgical coal on schedule and on budget, which the JSE-listed firm said was an indication that the project was close to conclusion.

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Anglo American produces about 3.5 million tons of coal a year at the Aquila site and owns 70 percent of the mine. Tokyo-headquartered conglomerate Mitsui & Co owns the other 30 percent at Aquila.

The Aquila mine, near Middlemount in Central Queensland in Australia, extends the life of Anglo American’s existing Capcoal underground operations by seven years after the company’s nearby Grasstree mine reached the end of its life in recent weeks, the company said.

Anglo American Bulk Commodities CEO Themba Mkhwanazi said the company delivered the Aquila project on time and within the budgeted attributable cost of $226 million (R3.5 billion).

“This new mine will have a total average annual saleable production of around 5 million tons of premium-quality hard coking coal and benefits from low capital intensity as we are using the existing infrastructure and systems from our adjacent operations.

“Aquila offers us highly attractive returns and margins at conservative long-term consensus prices,” Mkhwanazi said.

Anglo American metallurgical coal business CEO Tyler Mitchelson said: “Safely starting up longwall mining at Aquila Mine on our original schedule, despite the effects of the pandemic, is an important milestone for our metallurgical coal business and will support our ongoing contribution to both the Middlemount community and Queensland’s economy.

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“The mine uses our existing infrastructure at our Capcoal complex and supports around 600 ongoing operational roles for our Queensland-based workforce, including providing continuity of employment for our Grasstree mining team.”

Anglo American’s Capcoal complex comprises Capcoal open cut mine, Grasstree mine, Aquila mine, the coal handling and preparation plant, and associated infrastructure.

Anglo American said the Aquila mine was developed as one of Australia’s most technologically advanced underground mines, leveraging Anglo American’s advancements in under ground automation technology, remote operations, and data analytics.

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Related Topics:

Anglo AmericanMining

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