Company buys multi-billion dollar local mine

SIX years of uncertainty about the future of Biloela's Callide thermal coal mine has come to an end.

Brisbane-based firm, Batchfire Resources, completed its 100% acquisition of the mine from Anglo American on Monday.

Batchfire chief executive Peter Westerhuis said Callide had a "bright long-term future" ahead as a low-cost domestic and export coal producer, with significant thermal coal reserves still recoverable.

"This is a red-letter day for Batchfire, Queensland and especially the people of the Banana Shire and Central Queensland," Mr Westerhuis said.

"Our first priority is to engage with the Callide workforce, contractors, suppliers and the broader community to ensure the smoothest possible transition after six years of uncertainty over the mine's future direction, which I can assure them is positive."

Callide Valley open cut mine - visit to Biloela by Hervey Bay Probus Club. Photo contributed
Callide Valley open cut mine - visit to Biloela by Hervey Bay Probus Club. Photo contributed Contributed

The company said the acquisition took place on a walk-out, walk-in basis, meaning the mine should continue to operate uninterrupted.

CS Energy chief executive Martin Moore said the sale would provide increased certainty for the Biloela community as well as ongoing stability for CS Energy's own operations at Callide Power Station.

"Maintaining a reliable supply of coal is essential for the ongoing operations of the power station," Mr Moore said.

"CS Energy has negotiated with Batchfire amended terms to the current Coal Supply Agreements for the supply of coal to the Callide Power Station."

Mr Westerhuis said Batchfire was "committed to fostering the constructive, working relationship established with CS Energy during the sale process."

While the exact terms of the sale remain confidential, Batchfire said it had received investment support for the acquisition from Singapore-based Lindenfels Pte Ltd, a subsidiary of commodity traders Avra Commodities.

Callide consists of an open cut thermal coal mine and associated processing infrastructure that produced 7.9Mt of coal in 2015 and 5.5Mt in the first nine months of 2016.

The majority of this was sold to two adjacent power stations under long term contracts.

GALLERY: Burnt out fire truck

premium_icon GALLERY: Burnt out fire truck

The RFS truck will probably be written off.

"Someone could have been injured or killed"

premium_icon "Someone could have been injured or killed"

An RFS crew sheltered in their truck as the grass fire overcame them

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