On February 17, Aohua Finance Online quoted Ivan glasenberg, chief executive of mining giant Glencore, as saying that in the future, China will definitely develop an iron ore area similar to Pilbara in Africa. At that time, China will no longer pay for Australia's iron ore, and Australia's dominant position in the international iron ore market may also be affected.
It is reported that the iron deposits in Pilbara, Western Australia are mainly distributed in four major mining areas, namely, Central South area, Hamersley area, North Pilbara area and Kimberly area. These iron deposits have common characteristics: thick ore body, large scale, good continuity and stable ore grade. A survey data also shows that the proven iron ore reserves with iron content of more than 62% in this area reaching 34 billion tons.
According to the report, "the iron ore area China will develop in Africa in the future" is likely to refer to the Simandou iron mine in Guinea. According to public information, Simandou iron mine covers an area of 738 square kilometers. It is a world-class large-scale high-quality open-pit hematite with an overall ore grade of 66% ~ 67%. At present, the identified resources in the South and North sections are more than 2 billion tons, and the estimated total resources can reach 10 billion tons.
Based on this, Simandou iron ore has been regarded by the international community as the world's largest and highest quality undeveloped iron ore. As a "big cake" for many mining giants, in 2020, Chinalco and Rio Tinto confirmed to jointly develop Simandou iron ore. Rio Tinto in the south section of Simandou accounts for 45% of the shares, Chinalco group accounts for 40%, and the other 15% belongs to the Guinean government.
Another African country has decided to restart the export of iron ore to China. On February 1, the website of the Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone announced that the first ship of iron ore in Sierra Leone's new tangkrili iron ore project had successfully set sail to China on January 29. It is reported that the tangkeli iron ore resource is about 13.7 billion tons, which is the largest single magnetite in the world at present, with an average grade of 30%.
This once again confirms the conclusion of loy Institute of international policy in July 2020 that China has a choice in Africa after China Australia trade is off track.
In fact, in addition to "mining in Africa", China also issued a five-year plan for the iron and steel industry in early January, which plans to increase the self-sufficiency rate of iron metals (from iron ore) to more than 45% by 2025. The analysis points out that under this plan, the demand of Chinese market for imported iron ore may gradually decline in the future, and the import of iron ore from Australia will also decrease.
- [Editor:Catherine Ren]