Monday 19th Feb, 2018

Two iron ore mines, electric car plant on horizon for Gupta

Sanjeev Gupta. Photo: Liberty House
Sanjeev Gupta. Photo: Liberty House

British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta has continued to blaze a trail in South Australia, with plans announced for two new iron ore mines, and a prospective electric car plant.

Gupta, chairman of the GFG Alliance which bought out the Whyalla steelworks last year, has just gained approval for a pair of iron ore mine developments in the Middleback Range.

GFG’s mining division, SIMEC Mining, recently gained approval for the Iron Sultan mine, which will provide the Whyalla steelworks with cheap iron ore, and the Iron Warrior mine, which SIMEC says will export up to 1.5 million tonnes of iron ore each year.

“Iron Sultan will play a significant role in reducing the costs of steelmaking at Whyalla steelworks, while Iron Warrior continues South Australia’s role as a reliable iron ore exporter,” South Australian mining minister Tom Koutsantonis said, per ABC.

“Approval of these two mines demonstrates the commitment of the new owner to develop its South Australian iron ore assets and create a more sustainable steelmaking business.”

Koutsantonis had more to say about Gupta early this week, when he told ABC that the GFG Alliance had approached the State Government with plans to buy some of the assets of the closed Holden car plant in Adelaide’s north, in order to develop an electric car plant.

“Mr Gupta and the GFG Alliance already manufacture motor vehicles in the United Kingdom,” Koutsantonis was quoted as saying.

“They’re keen to manufacture and they saw this as an opportunity, I understand, to puirchase some equipment from General Motors Holden from a site that’s now closed down.

“What Mr Gupta is realising, like the rest of the world, is that electric vehicles … are the way of the future.”