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Business as usual for Fortescue despite strict WA border restrictions

  • Posted on Monday 23rd, March 2020.

Iron ore company, Fortescue Metals Group, has provided an update on its operations following an announcement that Western Australia will introduce strict border controls effective 1.30pm (WST) tomorrow.

Unless exempted, arrivals from other states in Australia will reportedly be ordered to self-isolate for 14 days.

The WA State Government has advised that exemptions will apply to essential services and workers, including health and emergency services, defence and policing, mining industry workforces, flight crews and freight of essential goods, via ports and trucks.

Fortescue had included this development in its scenario planning and has been working with the resources industry and the WA State Government to ensure that our operations continue and that we retain access to site critical operational roles.

"The majority of our workforce resides in Western Australia and we will work with our non-resident workforce to ensure that site critical functions are not impacted through a range of measures, including dedicated charter flights direct from the East Coast of Australia to our operational sites," Fortescue Metals Group said in an ASX announcement.

"Shipments continue from Port Hedland and mining and processing activity remains in line with our guidance for FY20. We will work proactively with our Fortescue team members to ensure that we have resources available and will also work with our contracting partners to ensure that our major projects continue in line with project schedules. Consistent with our commitment to continuous disclosure, any changes to project schedules and guidance will be communicated to the market if required."

Fortescue Metals Group CEO, Elizabeth Gaines, said the company has been working closely with industry and Government on the impact of travel restrictions on the resources sector.

"We commend the WA State Government on their decisive actions to contain the spread of Covid-19 in our community," she said. "The health and wellbeing of our whole team is our priority. We continue to safely deliver on our targets at this time of national need with mining, processing and shipments remaining in line with our guidance for FY20."

(Image: Fortescue Metals Group CEO, Elizabeth Gaines.)

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