TORONTO, May 7 /CNW/ - Further to the announcement on 16 January 2009,
the Company announced that the Federal Government of Australia has approved
the Environmental Impact Statement ("EIS") for construction and operation of
Stages 1 and 2 of the Company's Gladstone Nickel Project ("GNP").
"Along with the Queensland Government approval in January this year this
approval marks a significant milestone in the development of our Project and
is the product of over three years efforts to achieve a positive outcome to a
rigorous and challenging environmental process" said Mr. John Downie, CEO of
Mr. Downie went on to say, "Following the approval of the EIS by the
Queensland Government the Federal Government assessed the Project under
federal legislation concerning matters of national environmental significance.
This included an assessment of the potential effects of the project on the
Great Barrier Reef and important migratory species. Their approval means that
another important project development foundation is in place, and we can now
focus on securing funding for our Project".
The GNP will demonstrate environmental leadership through its use of best
practice air emissions and process water treatment technology and the
continued investigation of environmental synergies with other industrial
facilities (especially alumina producers) in the Gladstone region.
Stage 1 of the GNP, in the Yarwun Precinct of the Gladstone State
Development Area, will have the capacity to produce 63,000 tonnes of nickel,
6,000 tonnes of cobalt and around 175,000 tonnes of ammonium sulphate a year,
with production likely to commence late in 2012.
The Project is expected to create up to 2,600 construction jobs for stage
1 (2,000 of which will be in Gladstone) and 1,750 for the second stage. Around
530 Gladstone-based operational jobs will be created when production starts,
with additional employees being required at GPNL's laterite mines at
Marlborough in Australia and Ouinné in New Caledonia.
For further information:
For further information: John Downie, CEO - Gladstone Pacific Nickel
Ltd, Tel: +61 (0) 7 3231 7100; Fiona Owen - Grant Thornton UK LLP, Tel: +44
207 383 5100, John Prior - Arbuthnot Securities Tel: +44 207 012 2000