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Infrastructure loans back Pilbara urea project

Manufacturing News

The Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) has announced it will invest $255 million in infrastructure supporting the proposed $4.3 billion Perdaman Urea Project at Karratha in Western Australia.

The investment in the form of loans will upgrade common-user infrastructure that will support the project, which will convert liquefied natural gas into about two million tonnes of urea fertiliser per year.

Globally urea has been in short supply and Australia is facing shortfalls with the imminent closure of Incitec Pivot’s Gibson Island, Brisbane plant because of an inability to secure gas supplies.

The two loans are the first NAIF investments into WA Government entities and include:

  • $160 million to the Pilbara Ports Authority for a new multi-user wharf and facilities at the Port of Dampier
  • and $95 million to the Water Corporation for the expansion of the Burrup seawater supply and brine disposal scheme that will connect to the Perdaman Urea Plant once built.

The NAIF loans build on WA Government support for the project, which has provided $47.6 million for road relocation costs, the detailed design of a new Dampier Cargo Wharf and upgrades to seawater supply infrastructure.

Any WA Government financial contribution is subject to a number of conditions, including the project reaching financial close and all statutory and regulatory approvals being met.

State development minister Roger Cook said: “Recent international supply chain issues have highlighted just how important urea is to industry sectors such as agriculture and transport.

“Western Australia has the potential to supply these sectors with the urea they need.

“As the first new gas manufacturing project in the Pilbara for more than a decade, the Perdaman Urea Project will play a role in helping diversify Western Australia’s economy and create local jobs.”

Picture: Perdaman

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