Port Hedland in Australia could be developed to house a new terminal in next four years, as mining groups put on pressure to boost iron ore exports, it has been revealed.

The terminal could be functional by 2013 and handle up to 50 million tonnes of iron ore per year, Reuters said quoting the mining group, which is operating under the North West Iron Ore Alliance.

The figure would represent more than a third of last year’s total exports from Port Hedland.

The port’s trade by tonnage is 97% iron ore, comprising salt, petroleum products, general cargo, livestock and acid.