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While Cliffs Natural Resources has yet to announce where it will establish its chromite smelter, Sudbury is encouraged by news of a land deal north of Capreol.
According to a CBC report, Cliffs entered into a deal a year ago with businessman Bruno Gervais to purchase the former Moose Mountain Mine site for $330,000.
“According to the schedule Cliffs put out, they wanted to be in operation by January, 2015. As part of that schedule, the announcement would have to be made some time the first quarter of 2012 so it can move forward with planning and permitting,” said Greater Sudbury Coun. Dave Kilgour.
“It’s encouraging and we are putting two and two together but I haven’t heard anything concrete. Talks are still going on and moving on to the final phase of the evaluation as far as the environmental assessment goes.”
Cliffs is the leading player to develop a chromite deposit in the James Bay Lowlands. In addition to Sudbury, Greenstone, Thunder Bay and Timmins are also considered as possible locations for the smelter.
“Just the very fact we were the base case and it is based on a lot of positive things including all of the infrastructure that is here is a big plus in Sudbury’s favour,” Kilgour said. “We are anticipating an announcement soon but I haven’t got anything earth shattering at this point.”