The Chinese regime wants to develop two or three new iron mines with a capacity of more than 100 million tonnes a year; several more with a capacity of about 30 million tonnes a year; and a raft of smaller projects, each producing a few million tonnes. The government also intends to more than double production sourced from offshore iorn mines over which it has some control – to the point where, in aggregate, they supply more than 40 % of China’s import requirements. Nontheless, China’s own reserves of iron ore tend to be relatively small and of quite low-grade – typically than half the ferrous (fe) content of deposits mined by Rio Tinto, Vale and BHP Billiton. This means that many Chinese producers must mine and process more than twice the volume of raw material (and discard of its wastes) before they can produce the same amount of iron ore as delivered by the “Big Three”.