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front page news article today!!

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    Front page of today's Advocate in Northwest Tasmania!

    AN ANNOUNCEMENT on a proposed $500million silicon smelter possibly located in the North-West will be known at the end of March, Circular Head Mayor Daryl Quilliam has been told.

    While multinational chemical giant Wacker had expressed interest in Port Latta as one of three competing global sites for its project, it is now understood the company has been "offered another couple of areas in the North- West" from which to establish its operation, according to mining company Grange Resources.

    Yesterday, Cr Quilliam said Premier David Bartlett had recently told him "from his understanding, there would not be any more announcements until the end of March", taking the result beyond the next election.

    "I think he was still reasonably optimistic," Cr Quilliam said.

    Treasurer Michael Aird travelled to Munich earlier in the year to convince Wacker that Tasmania was the best location for its project.

    Grange Resources executive Wayne Bould said he understood Port Latta was only one of several North-West sites previously considered by Wacker.

    Mr Bould said he had not heard much in recent times about the likelihood of the company choosing Tasmania for its smelter.

    Wacker intends using a high volume of renewable energy and burning residual forest product from tree harvesting, which would normally be bulldozed into fire stacks and burnt.

    A government spokesman said it was hoped a company decision was made in the first half of 2010.
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