Credible rejection of Chinese mine bid?

Google Earth view of Prominent Hill mine buildings (old)Prominent Hill open-cut gold and copper mine in 2008

The Promi­nent Hill mine is almost 200 kms from the town of Woomera as the crow flies, but less than that (maybe 100kms) from the ordi­nance tar­get areas, by my cal­cu­la­tions. I’ve used the maps and oth­er infor­ma­tion in the ‘Woomera capa­bil­i­ty brief’ to draw an over­lay on a Google Earth image (click the first thumb­nail). The clos­est marked ordi­nance tar­get area to Promi­nent Hill the Parakylia ‘stand-off’ tar­get area about 100kms north west of the Woomera town­ship (sec­ond thumb­nail).

But, as the ‘Capa­bil­i­ty Brief’ reveals in some detail, the Range is also used for some pur­pos­es that seem to need a very large test­ing range, much larg­er than would be used for ordi­nance. For exam­ple:

  • Tac­ti­cal mis­sile tests deliv­ered by inter­con­ti­nen­tal U.S. (B-52 bomber) flights;
  • Tests of ground-to-air mis­siles with a long range;
  • Scram-jet (hper­son­ic jet) engines launched on rock­ets with 450km range;
  • Long-range sur­veil­lance-drone tests
Does this jus­ti­fy restrict­ing for­eign investors’ access to mines in a zone “the size of Eng­land”? Pos­si­bly. I just don’t know for sure. Does it jus­ti­fy restrict­ing access specif­i­cal­ly to Chi­nese-owned min­ing com­pa­nies (but not, e.g. British-owned). Pos­si­bly. I’m skep­ti­cal, but it’s not implau­si­ble.

Here’s some more news of the first gold pro­duc­tion at Promi­nent Hill in Febu­rary this year from the Coober Pedy Region­al Times

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