Article by Annie Hesse from the Arafura Times Edition 1077
Nhulunbuy-based Aboriginal company YBE is reaching for the stars in 2016, after commencing haulage operations in Western Australia. "The move to secure contracted work outside of East Arnhem Land was supported by the YBE Board to ensure the long-term future of the company," YBE General Manager Murray Knyvett said.
"The initial contract is for two quad road trains operating out of Port Hedland 24 hours per day seven days per week hauling iron ore."
Mr Knyvett said six FIFO operators would work on the project, which will see two road trains carry a payload of 168 tonnes over various routes - some as long as 560 km one-way from various mine sites inland from Port Hedland.
"For us this really is a trial at the moment - if it is successful, we might look at expanding further in that direction," the company's General Manager said.
"In one of the most competitive haulage markers in Australia, it is a very proud time for everyone associated with the company to show that YBE is able to secure work that will provide financial benefit to the community of North East Arnhem Land into the future.
From humble beginnings as the Yirrkala Brick Works in 1968, YBE has grown and diversified into a highly successful service operation and is now one of the largest Aboriginal companies in Australia in terms of both assets and revenue.
The privately-owned Yolngu business receives no direct government support, has dedicated and skilled staff of 90 employees and is one of the region's leaders in the training and employment of Yolngu people.