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$150M metal mine cleared to ramp up operations in Northern Australia

New Century Resources
New Century Resources

A base metal producer will receive special treatment so it can ramp up its $150 million operations in northwest Queensland.

New Century Resources will be allowed to pay mining royalties later for its Century Zinc Mine, 250 km northwest of Mt Isa.

Mine now, pay later

The State Government’s royalty deferral and repayment agreement means the proponent can postpone payment, provided it pays interest and produces security of payment.

The decision means the proponent can recommission existing infrastructure, ramp up operations at the mine to reprocess zinc and silver tailings, continue operating a 304km slurry pipeline between the mine site and Karumba, and dredge the Port of Karumba.

There is potential to resume conventional mining to produce zinc and lead concentrates to extend the economic life of the project.

Hundreds of jobs promised

The revival is expected to create 260 construction jobs and 240 operational roles.

“We want to see new projects in the North West Minerals Province but also new technologies that can extract more value from former projects like this,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said in a public statement.

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Support appreciated

The proponent thanked the state government for the delayed royalty payments.

“We appreciate the Queensland Government’s strong support in ensuring this innovative model can successfully achieve sound mine closure and rehabilitation practices into the future,” New Century managing director Patrick Walta said in a public statement. “The New Century team’s achievements to date have set the benchmark in demonstration of the potential for economic mine rehabilitation in Australia.”

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