Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC)

Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC)

May 30, 2005 09:40 ET

Ongoing IOC equipment renewal program: IOC Invests $31 Million to Retrofit its Concentrator

MONTREAL, CANADA--(CCNMatthews - May 30, 2005) - Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC), Canada's largest manufacturer of iron ore pellets, is investing over $30 million to retrofit its concentrator by replacing the spirals on eight processing lines. Part of an ambitious equipment renewal program, the investment will mean a substantial increase in the production capacity of the concentrator and have a positive impact on IOC's profitability.

The Humphrey HC-1350 spirals currently installed on processing lines fed by the AG 13 mill have been in use for 33 years. They will be replaced by Reichert WW-6 spirals. In addition to improving the concentrator's performance, the new spirals will make it easier to detect water-system and feed problems.

Spirals are critical concentrator components. They are used to recover the iron after the ore has been crushed. The resulting concentrate is then forwarded as feed to pellet plant or kept as concentrate for sale.

Reichert spirals have already been installed on two lines and are now operational. All of the spirals required for the project should be received by the end of 2005. According to the project timetable, the six lines that have yet to be retrofitted will be equipped with their new spirals and be operational by October 2006.

There is a 14-week waiting period between spiral manufacturing and delivery to Labrador City. The new spirals account for about 20% of the overall project cost.

IOC is the largest manufacturer of iron ore pellets in Canada and generates over $600m revenue. It operates a mine, concentrator and a pelletizing plant in Labrador City, Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as port facilities located in Sept-Iles (Quebec). The Company also operates a 418 kilometer railroad that links the mine to the port. Our customer base covers North American, European and Asian steel producers. IOC has about 1700 employees and celebrates its fifty years of operations in 2005.

IOC's major shareholder and operator is the international mining group Rio Tinto which has activities in more than 40 countries throughout the world.

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