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'Exit' Money from Cliffs Should be Returned to Esperance

For more information, contact Tori Castledine (EO).

1 Feburary 2018 

Member for Roe Peter Rundle MLA has called for any money given to the State Government as Cliffs Natural Resources exit its Kooyanobbing operations to fund projects in the Esperance region.

According to documents filed by Cliffs last year with ASIC, contractual obligations include take-or-pay contracts to ship a minimum 7.5 million tonnes of iron ore a year through Esperance Port until 2030.

Mr Rundle said any money paid by Cliffs to the State Government under this contract should be used to fast-track key infrastructure projects in communities most affected by the closures.

“It is my understanding Cliffs will need to negotiate the take-or-pay aspect of their contract with the State Government if they don’t meet minimum volume requirements,” Mr Rundle said.

“This money should be returned to the Esperance community, which will be hardest hit by the Cliffs withdrawal, for projects that will stimulate the economy and create jobs, such as the refurbishment of Esperance Tanker Jetty.

“Restoring the jetty to its former glory will attract more tourists to town and bring back the ‘Kalgoorlie locals’ boosting Esperance’s economy.”

Restoration of the jetty requires financial input from the State Government.

“I believe the priority needs to be on reopening a restored jetty and money paid by Cliffs to the State Government can be used to fund this.”

Mr Rundle said any money received could also be used to fast-track construction of the new Esperance TAFE Campus, a project the State Government has committed to.

“Construction of the new campus will create much-needed new jobs in the town,” Mr Rundle said.

“Since being elected Labor has constantly let down the Esperance community and instead of creating more jobs as promised, the Government has taken jobs away by failing to support projects such as Mineral Resources’ mining expansion in the region.”