IOC to expand iron ore production

Rio Tinto has green-lighted an expansion of the Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC)  facility in Labrador City, Canada.

The second of a three-stage Concentrator Expansion Program was halted in 2008 due to the financial crisis. Resuming the expansion is expected to expand production by 40% to 26 million tonnes a year, the company stated in a release.

The CAD$289 million investment will expand the magnetite processing facility and add new spiral lines to its gravity separation unit, add new mining equipment, railway cars and a locomotive, as well as upgrade the Wabush terminal sub-station.

The first stage of the expansion program involved installation of an overland conveyor and a fourth autogenous grinding mill, along with associated mining and rail equipment, and is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

IOC is the largest manufacturer of iron ore pellets in Canada, and is operated by Rio Tinto, which is also the largest shareholder at 59%. Twenty-six percent of the company is owned by Mitsubishi Corp., and the Labrador Iron Ore Royalty Income Fund owns 15%.

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