HIBBING, MN, Oct. 23, 2014 /CNW/ - As it ramps up work on its 7 million ton iron-ore mining, crushing and pelletization project, Essar Steel Minnesota LLC ("ESML") has been honored to receive visits from Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation Board Commissioner Tony Sertich and Minnesota DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr.
With the September 30th closing of its financing package for the entire $1.8 billion project, ESML received a cash infusion of approximately $800 million from equity contributions from sponsor Essar Global Fund Limited and debt financing to be utilized for completing construction of the project and ramping up operations. With close to 100% of engineering complete, about 90% in value of procurement orders released and 50% of construction activities completed for the project, ESML remains on schedule to commence production of iron ore pellets in the second half of 2015. ESML expects to be the lowest cost producer of taconite pellets in North America and will be the only pellet producer in the United States to have the flexibility and production capability to produce standard blast furnace pellets as well as fluxed and DR grade pellets. Through firm long-term off-take agreements in place with ArcelorMittal USA Inc. and Essar Steel Algoma Inc., ESML already has customers committed over the long term to purchase its entire 7 million tons of planned annual production capacity.
Governor Dayton and Commissioner Sertich visited ESML's offices in Hibbing last week to review and discuss the project in light of the recent news that ESML had secured the necessary financing to complete construction of its fully permitted open-pit iron ore mine, crushing, concentrating and pelletizing facilities. Also, on October 23, 2014, DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr visited and toured the project site. Commissioner Landwehr was able to observe first-hand the intensive construction activities that are again underway and the significant progress being made at the project site.
About Essar Steel Minnesota LLC
ESML is an iron ore project engaged in the development of a 7 million ton per annum fully-integrated pellet production facility in the western Mesabi Range in northern Minnesota. When completed, the $1.8 billion project will consist of an open-pit iron ore mine, crushing, concentrating and pelletizing facilities and a rail line and train-loading system. ESML has an aggregate of approximately 2.0 billion tons of measured, indicated and inferred magnetite iron resources and reserves, of which approximately 1.7 billion tons are classified as proven or probable reserves, and an additional 0.2 billion tons of inferred magnetite iron resources. These estimates are based on ESML's NI 43-101 report.
SOURCE: Essar Steel Minnesota LLC
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Follow-up questions regarding the information in this Press Release should be directed to Mitch Brunfelt, Director of Government & Public Relations, at (218) 966-5017, [email protected], or [email protected].