April 28, 2018 by admin
No deadline or guarantee of atime line has been given for the shelved Olympic Dam expansion.
BHP chief executive officerMarius Kloppers flew into Adelaide on Monday to hold secret crisis talks withSouth Australian Premier Jay Weatherill after the company shelved its OlympicDam mine expansion.
It was the first time MrWeatherill had met face-to-face with Mr Kloppers since he announced theexpansion deferral on August 22.
The talks were so secret thatindustry groups, including the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy andopposition leader Isobel Redmond weren’t invited.
Mr Weatherill went into the talksto see where BHP was at with the project.
The Premier left the meeting withno further indication as to what the future holds for Olympic Dam.
“I communicated my disappointmentwith their decision and Mr Kloppers understood that this was a deeplydisappointing decision,” said Mr Weatherill.
“He [Marius Kloppers] cannotguarantee either a timeline or a process that is going to lead to the expansionof this mine.”
The future of the proposedexpansion seems to rely on new technology that BHP is testing with nodefinitive date.
“I can’t give you any timeframeon how these things progress,” Mr Kloppers said.
Askedwhether he would grant an extension to the December 15 deadline on theagreement governing the expansion if BHP came to him at the last minute, MrWeatherill said, “no.”
Economistshave predicted the shelving of the $30 billion expansion could cost the SouthAustralian economy up to $1 billion over the next five years as a result of jobshredding, a writedown in regional land values and the cancellation ofconstruction work.
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