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Loading Iron Ore at Geraldton, Western Australia [IMAGE]

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December 18, 2012

(c) REUTERS/Rebekah Kebede

A ship is loaded with iron ore at the port in Geraldton, Western Australia December 3, 2012.

A new deepwater port on Australia’s Indian Ocean Coast was supposed to be the showpiece of the country’s decade-long mining boom and open up a huge new iron ore belt to export to Asian markets. But twice in the past 15 years, plans for the port on a scrubby stretch of land 400 km (250 miles) north of Perth have collapsed, most recently last month due to spiralling costs and falling iron ore prices.

The move will keep a new chunk of iron ore from the Mid West region of Western Australia off world markets and further cement the stranglehold of Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton, the world’s No.2 and No.3 producers, who dominate the iron-rich Pilbara region further north.

(c) Reuters

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