Tuesday, February 22, 2011

AusGroup/Ezion Holdings

AusGroup/Ezion Holdings: More bad weather for AusGroup & Ezion, both of which are exposed to Western Australia, which is bracing for further flooding in the state's Pilbara iron ore region as tropical cyclone Carlos tracked along the coast, having already forced ports & oil fields to halt operations.

Loading of ships for export was disrupted after authorities at Port Hedland--used by the country's major iron ore producers - suspended operations & face continued heavy rains that have closed rail
lines & roads.

Rio Tinto cautioned that shipping volumes are likely to be affected this quarter as cyclones Carlos & Dianne hamper its operations. BHP Billiton is monitoring the situation while Fortescue, the country's 3rd largest iron ore producer is waiting to hear when the port would reopen. All 3 iron ore producers are long term customers of AusGroup.
Another client, oil & gas E&P firm Woodside Petroleum has shut prodn at its Cossack Pioneer oil facility in offshore Western Australia due to the approach of cyclone Carlos. Its Enfield oil facility was also closed cos of tropical cyclone Dianne. The closures may also impact Ezion, which is providing liftboat services to the Gorgon gasfield & is setting up 2 marine supply bases there.

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