ITOCHU coal group has been associated with the coal export business in Australia for over 45 years. In 1994, through a coal investment in the Stratford Joint Venture by ICA Coal Australia Pty Ltd, ITOCHU shifted from solely a coal trading company to an investment and trading company. In 1996, ITOCHU Coal Resources Australia Pty Limited (ICRA) was established as a vehicle to invest in the NCA (Newland Collinsville and Abbots point) project. Since then, ICRA or IMEA Coal Division has been active to acquire coal assets and as a result, it is now involved with 11 coal projects in Australia and Indonesia.
IMEA Coal Investments
In 2009 (Japanese Fiscal Year), the total amount of production from the mines in which IMEA takes an interest was approximately 35 million tonnes (100% basis).
NCA Joint Venture (QLD) 35% equity:
The NCA joint venture (Xstrata Coal Queensland (XCQ):55%, ICRA: 35%, Sumisho Coal Australia (SCAP): 10%) is one of the major coal producing complexes in Australia. Located in central Queensland, it currently supplies 4.5mtpa of coking/thermal coal from the Collinsville mine for both the export and domestic market, and 9.4mtpa of thermal/coking coal from the Newlands mine for the export market. The port of Abbot Point, where all export coal from the NCA complex is handled has a geographical advantage with a throughput capacity of 25mtpa, which would see further expansion in the coming years to handle 50mtpa by the end of 2011.
Oaky Creek Joint Venture (QLD) 20% equity:
The Oaky Creek joint venture (XCQ: 55%, ICRA: 20%, SCAP: 25%) is located in central Queensland and produces 1st grade coking coal from two underground operations. Production capacity is in the order of 8.0 mtpa to export markets through the Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal and Gladstone Coal Terminal.
Rolleston Joint Venture (QLD) 12.5% equity:
The Rolleston Joint Venture (XCQ: 75%, ICRA: 12.5%, SCAP: 12.5%) is also located in central Queensland. It produces low ash thermal coal from Opencut operations at annual rate of 9.0mtpa. Coal is exported through the Gladstone Coal Terminal.
Wandoan Joint Venture (QLD) 12.5% equity:
The Wandoan Joint Venture (XCQ: 75%, IMEA: 12.5%, SCAP: 12.5%) is an undeveloped coal deposit located at Surat Basin in southern Queensland. Project is estimated to produce up to 22mtpa of export thermal coal with the initial production commencing from 2014. Coal is planned to be shipped through Wiggins Island Coal Terminal.
Ashton Joint Venture (NSW) 10% equity:
The Ashton Joint Venture (major partner Yancoal Australia Pty Limited: 60%) is located in the Hunter Valley NSW. The first shipment was made in May 2004 and the joint venture has been successfully developing its relations with the export market.
Ashton produces around 3.0 mtpa of high quality semi soft coking coal and steaming coal from open cut and underground operations (The UG commenced production in March 2007) with production increases scheduled for the future.
Cumnock Joint Venture – Ravensworth North Project (NSW) 10% equity:
The Cumnock colliery is located in the Hunter Valley producing both semi soft coking coal and thermal coal. Xstrata Coal New South Wales (XCN) owns 90% of equity in the joint venture. Coal is exported through PWCS in Newcastle Harbour.
Vickery South Joint Venture (NSW):
The Vickery South project is located in the Gunnedah Basin of New South Wales. IMEA signed a farm in agreement with Coalworks in May 2010 to own up to 49% of the project. The project is expected to commence production in 2014 and majority of the product will be semi soft coking coal.
Maules Creek Joint Venture (NSW) 15% equity:
The Maules Creek project is located in the Gunnedah Basin of New South Wales and with 356 mt of JORC Reserves, is one of the largest coal deposits in Australia. IMEA has signed an agreement to purchase 15% of stake in the project and both parties have agreed to extend the exclusivity deed to negotiate the potential acquisition of up to a further 10% stake until 14 June 2011. The project is expected to commence in 2012, producing both semi soft coking and premium quality thermal coal. The production will eventually ramp up to 10.5 mtpa.
PT Marunda Grahamineral (Indonesia) 23.5% share-holding
This is ICRA’s first attempt to invest into an Indonesian project, having a 23.5% share of PT Marunda Grahamineral (MGM) with 2 domestic individual partners. The mine is located in central Kalimantan, Indonesia. The project started to export in April, 2004. It produces around 1.8 mtpa of premium semi soft coking coal and high CV steaming coal.
PT Suprabari Mapanindo (Indonesia) 23.5% share-holding
PT Suprabari Mapanindo (SMM) is the project to develop coal deposit located 100km south of MGM to form a future mining complex with MGM in the Central Kalimantan. ICRA is holding 23.5% share of the company. Production of semi hard coking coal and high CV steaming coal is expected from 2012.
Exergen（2.5% share holding）
Exergen has developed Continuous Hydrothermal Dewatering (CHTD) technology for high moisture of subbituminous coal. Brown coal contents up to 70% of moisture by mass. The technology accelerates the efficient use of undeveloped subbituminous coal resources by removing the moisture.
AND much more
ICRA or IMEA Coal Division is committed to its continuous growth with increasing the coal assets globally, and a lot more of new projects may be introduced in the next edition of this brochure.