BHP (ASX, NYSE: BHP), the world’s largest miner, will decide whether to go ahead with its long-delayed $17 billion Jansen potash project in Canada by February 2021, when it reaches 10 years since completing the feasibility study for the operation.
The company has been mulling a final decision on the asset for at least six years, during which it has spent almost $3 billion laying the ground for crop nutrient-producing project.
Two shafts have already been sunk, but BHP will have to invest another $5.3–$5.7 billion to finish phase one construction of the mine, which the company said would take fewer than 5 years to complete. BHP has in the past said it would consider selling a stake in the project to share capital and risk.
Jansen, located in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, is expected to give the company exposure to rising global food demand and represents one of its few big growth prospects.
“Work on engineering to support project planning and on finalizing the port solution is required and the board has approved $144 million for these activities,” BHP said on Thursday.
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