China has discovered a one billion-tonne iron ore deposit, said to be the biggest find of the mineral in the country since the 1980s, which lies 100 to 600m underground in Hebei province.

The 6km-long deposit, which is 41.43 to 108.95m thick, will help China boost its position in price negotiations and enable the country to make long-term plans for steel production.

The deposit will also help the country decrease its reliance on global suppliers and bolster resistance to price volatilities on the spot market.

The iron ore deposit contains an estimated 1.04 billion tonnes of proven reserves and 500 million tonnes of unproven reserves.