BHP Billiton will spend nearly $US10bn to expand iron ore operations and energy and metallurgical coal projects in Australia.

In Western Australia, it will spend US$3.3bn developing the Jimblebar mine and rail links, delivering capacity of 35Mt/y.

US$1.9bn will be spent on developing Port Hedland, including two additional berths and shiploaders, a car dumper, connecting conveyor routes and associated rail works and rolling stock; and US$1.4bn on port blending facilities and rail yards to enable ore blending.

The aim is to develop port capacity that, with subsequent debottlenecking, will allow it to fill its 240Mt/y allocation in the inner harbour.

It will spend $400M to expand Hunter Valley Energy Coal in NSW to increase production by 4Mt/y to 24Mt/y. The expansion is set to be completed in 2013.

It has approved three metallurgical coal projects located in the Bowen Basin in central Queensland. The projects will add 4.9Mt/y of mine capacity through development of the Daunia and Broadmeadow mines.

Also, 11Mt/y of port capacity will be developed at the Hay Point Coal Terminal. BHP is spending $2.5bn and the mines are set to be completed in 2013, with the port terminal to be completed in 2014.