Three Chinese state-owned companies have signed contracts to finance and construct a US$1.38 billion mine, rail and port project in Western Australia. The project brings together China Railway Engineering Corp, China Metallurgical Engineering Construction Group Corp and China Harbor Engineering Corp with Australia's Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (FMG) to develop the Christmas Creek mine. Construction of the mine, railway and port was expected to be completed in time to see the first ore exported in 2006, FMG officials said. The rail and port services will be capable of exporting up to 80 million tons of iron ore a year, making services available to other miners in the region, FMG said.
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