Ausdrill has been awarded a mining services contract from Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) for its Solomon iron ore project, in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

Under the $75m contract, Ausdrill will provide reverse circulation grade control and resource development drilling at the Solomon Hub, using up to six drills to define the initial three years of ore production.

Ausdrill is examining options for the establishment of a new division providing underground mining services in Australia.

As part of this, Ausdrill is planning to establish an underground contract mining division as a start-up or by way of acquisition of contractors currently in the market.

Ausdrill managing director Ron Sayers said that due to the increasing level of activity in the Pilbara region, there are significant opportunities to provide further services to new and existing customers.