The China Railway Engineering Corporation (CREC) has presented a proposal to Venezuelan state iron ore producer Ferrominera Orinoco (FMO) to build an alternative rail line, an FMO executive told BNamericas.
"The proposal involves building another line, in addition to FMO's existing line, which would run from the San Isidro deposit to the Puerto Ordaz plant," the executive said.
The Chinese firm also offered to expand the capacity of the Palua dock, where FMO exports part of its production.
However, the executive said that the offer is still being evaluated. "It's part of a project that is still under development."
In August FMO finished upgrading the mineral reception system at Palua, on the Orinoco river. The system was originally designed to receive briquettes and it can now load lump ore.
The construction of a reception hopper to operate with iron ore fines is another future project, the executive added.
The new system will significantly reduce the company's operating costs and is complemented by improvements to the ore unloading system at the Boca Grande II floating transfer station, on the Atlantic Ocean, which the company finished in July.
FMO is controlled by state heavy industry holding CVG and has capacity to produce 25Mt/y of iron ore.
The company, located in Puerto Ordaz, supplies ore to Venezuelan iron and steel processors, and exports products to Europe, Asia and Latin America.