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Palabora iron ore exports delayed

Palabora shaft
in the foreground,
with the edge of
the pit to the right
Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 22 September 2010 – Palabora Mining Company “’ the South African copper-producing unit of the Rio Tinto Group “’ says the destruction of a bridge in South Africa by a train derailment is going to have a negative impact on the company’s sales revenue, by preventing it from exporting magnetite, a type of iron ore.

“The incident will consequently have an impact on sales revenue,” the company “’ which is part-owned by Rio Tinto and Anglo American Plc “’ said in a statement to the JSE here. “The bridge on the rail line, which links Palabora’s mining operations with the Richards Bay and Maputo ports, will take at least five weeks to repair,” it added.

“Palabora exports magnetite “’ a by-product of its copper operations “’ to China,” it said “The company is now assessing the impact of the derailment and will be reviewing alternative options,” it added.

“Palabora sold 2.57Mt of magnetite in 2009 “’ a 35% increase on the previous year” “’ the company said. Shipments in the six months to June fell by almost 120 000 tonnes, or half its usual monthly deliveries, because of a strike by workers of state-owned ports and freight rail operator, Transnet Limited, Palabora revealed last month. The strike lasted for three weeks.