Now, the waiting begins. On Monday, Noront Resources Ltd. confirmed it had received bids from Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie, Thunder Bay and Timmins to become host for its new $1-billion ferrochrome production facility.
In a release, Noront Resources said Hatch, a Mississauga-based engineering and consulting company, will now help evaluate the bids, which were due Friday.
“Next steps include calculating indicative capital and operating costs and reviewing these alongside community and First Nations support, site appropriateness, environmental factors, access to a skilled workforce and other elements,” Noront said in a release. “Near the conclusion of this detailed analysis, Noront will engage directly with the owners of the favoured site(s) to come to a mutually agreeable commercial arrangement for the use of the property.
“The company estimates the adjudication process will conclude in three to four months depending on the competitiveness and complexity of the bids and the ensuing commercial negotiations. A decision will be publicly announced at that time along with the criteria and rationale for site selection.”
At stake are the 350 direct and 150 indirect jobs the ferrochrome production facility would create, processing ore from the mineral-rich Ring of Fire area in northwestern Ontario. Noront Resources has said it will take five to 10 years to build the plant, once a location is picked.
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