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Japanese companies bid for West Australian iron ore

Tokyo: Japanese companies Murchison Metals and Mitsubishi have put in a $1bn bid for Australia's Midwest Corporation. If successful, the companies will win the right to build iron ore rail and port facilities near Geraldton in the lucrative West Australian region. The bid pits the Japanese investors against a set of Chinese companies led by Yilgarn Infrastructure who also hope to secure the rights for the $3bn infrastructural enhancement project.

Yilgarn already has a number of exclusive agreements with the Midwest Corporation are likely to impact the Japanese companies long term plans for exports.

Although the Western Australian government has urged the two sides to work together, their competing visions make the scenario extremely unlikely. Midwest Corporation is reported to currently be assessing the bid.  [12/10/07]

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