Iron-ore shipments from northern Australia, the world’s biggest exporter, resumed after halting for more than two days as Tropical Cyclone Christine waned over the nation’s resource-rich Pilbara region.
Port Hedland, the world’s largest ore-export terminal, restarted shipments on 31 December, Port Hedland Port Authority spokesman Steed Farrell said on Tuesday in an e-mail. The facility, which exports iron ore from mines owned by BHP Billiton Ltd. and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd., shipped about 252 million tons in 2012, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Operations have gradually been returning to normal, said Farrell. The facility, which closed on 29 December, sustained very minor damage that wasn’t affecting operations, he said.
Australia probably accounted for about 52% of global seaborne iron-ore supply in 2013, according to Morgan Stanley. The storm, which reached Category 3 at its strongest, weakened below tropical cyclone intensity as it moved southeast across Western Australia, bringing winds with gusts of about 85 kilometers (53 miles) per hour at its center, the Bureau of Meteorology said on Tuesday on its website.
Shipments restarted at Dampier Port, about 1,500 kilometers north of Perth, at 6 pm on 31 December after they were halted late 29 December, Dampier Port Authority’s acting chief executive officer Paul Toussaint-Jackson said on Tuesday by phone.