- Region: Oceania
- Energy and Natural Resources
- Overseas Investment Loans
March 12, 2014
The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC; Governor: Hiroshi Watanabe) signed today, a loan agreement amounting up to approximately USD172 million (JBIC portion) with Mitsui & Co. Iron Ore Exploration & Mining Pty. Ltd. (MIOE), an Australian subsidiary of Mitsui & Co., Ltd. The loan is cofinanced with a private financial institution, which brings the overall cofinancing amount to USD246 million.
The loan is intended to finance a part of funds necessary for MIOE to develop Jimblebar Iron Ore Mine for the annual production of 35 million tons. Previously, JBIC has provided a loan to MIOE for the acquisition of 7% interests in the mine in July 2013*1.
Since steel is used extensively for various products, including automobiles and construction materials, iron ore is one of the fundamental metal resources for Japanese industries. As Japan depends entirely on the import from overseas including Australia where demand for iron ore is expected to rise on a global level with growth of emerging economies such as China, in recent years, it has become an important challenge to secure stable medium- and long-term supply of high grade iron ore. The grade of iron ore produced from the Jimblebar iron mine is comparable to the iron ore Japanese steel makers have long procured and thus suitable as raw material for steel. Therefore, the loan, which leads to an increased supply of high grade iron ore to Japan, will contribute to securing a medium- and long-term, stable supply of mineral resources to Japan.
As Japan's policy-based financial institution, JBIC will continue to support the development and acquisition of interests in natural resources, by drawing on its various financial facilities and schemes for structuring projects, and performing its risk-assuming function.