The President of BHP Billiton Iron Ore, Ian Ashby told delegates at the ongoing inmeral conference Monrovia that his company intends spend over US$80 billion on growing Billiton business globally.
“Over the next five years, we plan to spend in excess of US$80 billion on growing our businesses, including the recently approved US$6.6 billion expansion of our Western Australia iron ore operations,” he said.
“In fact, BHP Billiton is planning to spend more on iron ore than any other commodity in its portfolio over the next 5 years.” BHP Billiton signed a 25-year mineral development agreement with the Liberian government. It has five operation sites in the country-Bong, Margibi, Nimba and Grand Bassa counties.
He said “our strategy is to secure and develop large, low cost, long-life, tier one assets which deliver superior returns through the economic cycle. Our focus is on upstream businesses in export oriented commodities.” Mr. Ashby said, Iron ore production has the potential to be one of the major pillars of Liberia’s resource industry.
“BHP Billiton, now 150 years old, is the world’s largest diversified resources company, with over 100,000 employees and contractors across 100 operations in 25 countries around the globe,” he said.
He added, Since the merging of BHP with Billiton in 2001, BHP Billiton has invested US$24 billion globally and completed 54 major projects.
Our strategy is to secure and develop large, low cost, long-life, tier one assets, which deliver superior returns through the economic cycle. Our focus is on upstream businesses in export oriented commodities.
Both these factors are critical for iron ore, where we want to establish mining, infrastructure and export systems which stand the test of time throughout different economic climates.
“We apply strict ethical guidelines, and some of the industry’s toughest safety and environmental standard”.
“Further, we make a concerted effort to engage our host communities in order to make a lasting, positive contribution to the countries and communities in which we operate,” he told the delegates during his presentation. He added: “And this is the operating model that we bring here to Liberia.”