Drilling imperative

Posted September 23, 2015

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Mark Adams during his farewell week at MMG’s Century mine.

Former general manager of MMG’s Queensland operations Mark Adams has raised concerns about the lack of significant new operations in the pipeline in the North West as Century mine winds down.

Mr Adams is now working as chief operating officer for Konkola Copper Mines in Zambia, the country where he started his professional career 35 years ago as a crew boss.

He said north-west Queensland had provided him with many unparalleled career-building opportunities at Mount Isa Mines, Cannington and Century

But the outlook for mining in the region was, like much of Australia, less optimistic than it had been in the past, Mr Adams said.

The next five years would see more of the North West Minerals Province’s major operations approach the end of their lives, he said.

He pointed to a dearth of significant new resource projects on the horizon and, with the time from first exploration success to production being in the region of seven to 10 years, said this would inevitably impact on the region’s economy.

“The other point worth making is that the cost of energy and infrastructure in north-west Queensland is now prohibitive, and that will be a major consideration when any resource company is considering the viability of a future operation,” Mr Adams said.

“On a positive note, the North West Minerals Province remains a highly prospective part of the world, so I am confident that there could be a brighter future if all parties work together in a collaborative manner as was done during the Carpentaria Mineral Province study which facilitated the construction of some seven mines in less than a decade.”

Mr Adams offered thanks to the team at MMG’s local operations for their engagement and personal investment in a number of transformations during his time with the company.

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