Australia’s next rare earths producer Hastings Technology Metals (ASX: HAS) has successfully completed its first blast of construction waste material at the Yangibana rare earths project in WA. The material is required for the early infrastructure works packages that include the construction of access roads, airstrip and village accommodation.
This is an important milestone in the development of the early works infrastructure and allows advancement towards full-scale process plant construction over the coming months.
- First construction blast has been fired at the Yangibana rare earths project.
- This is a major step in the development of the A$658m Yangibana Project in the Upper Gascoyne.
- The blast represents the start of the next phase of infrastructure development works at Yangibana, on the way to a target of ore commissioning by 2H 2024.
- Over the next few months, the Yangibana team will be completing key enabling packages such as the main access road, airstrips, accommodation village and site communication link to enable EPCM commencement in 2H 2022.
- Yangibana will create around 500 construction jobs and more than 250 ongoing operational roles.
Yangibana is expected to produce rare earth concentrates for more than 15 years and will contribute some 6-8% of the world’s production of Neodymium and Praseodymium, the two most sort after rare earth elements.
Hastings anticipates that a large percentage of the A$658 million project spend will be awarded to companies based in Australia, with the majority going to companies based in Western Australia.
As at the end of May 2022 contracts have been awarded for village earthworks and construction, communications and water supply infrastructure and other miscellaneous works.
Andrew Reid, Hastings’ Chief Operating Officer, said:
“The Hastings team is progressing on many work fronts at Yangibana, ably supported by its trusted contracting partners. Getting the airstrip, communications and accommodation infrastructure is vital to allow the activation of the large workforce required to commence process plant construction once FID has been announced. Hastings is excited by progress made to date and is on track for commissioning during the latter part of 2024.”