Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners (MSIP) has acquired a 49% interest in a private haulage road project in Western Australia for about A$1.3bn (€796m) from listed mining group Mineral Resources (MinRes).

MinRes is completing the construction of the 150km dual-lane Onslow Haul Road under what it describes as a “innovative transportation infrastructure solution” to unlock stranded iron ore deposits in the West Pilbara region of Western Australia.

The road, due for completion in the second half of this year, links the Ken’s Bore mine site to the Port of Ashburton and will be fully sealed, fenced and equipped with fibre optic cabling to support the operation of MinRes autonomous road trains.

MinRes will continue to own the majority stake in the road and has exclusive rights to use, operate and maintain the Onslow Haul Road.

Tim Cooper, managing director for MSIP, said: “We are proud to be co-stewards of an asset we believe will deliver an attractive, inflation-protected cash yield, backed by significant barriers to entry and attractive underlying economics.” 

Excavator leveling ground

Source: Pexels

Chris Ellison, MinRes managing director, said: “As the first transaction of its kind in Australia’s iron ore industry, it showcases the considerable value of MinRes portfolio of infrastructure assets and our ability to unlock significant capital.”

To read the latest IPE Real Assets magazine click here.