The Australian government-funded Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) has announced the approval of a concessional loan to Sheffield Resources Ltd.



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Minister for Resources and Northern Australia. Media Releases. "$95 million NAIF loan ensures Thunderbird Project is go" of 19 September 2018. Available at:

Sheffield Resources Limited. Projects. Thunderbird. Retrieved on 13 April 2019. Available at:

Inception date: 19 Sep 2018 | Removal date: open ended

State loan

On 19 September 2018, the Minister of Resources and Northern Australia has announced the approval of an AUD 95 million loan (over USD 69 million at the time of the announcement) for Sheffield Resources Ltd. to build a mine and mineral processing facility. 

The resources will be distributed by the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF by its acronym) and will be used to finance the construction of the on-site infrastructure at the company's Thunderbird Mineral Sands Project in Northern Australia.

The key goods extracted in the Thunderbird project are zirconium and sulfate ilmenite. 
According to the Minister, the project has the potential to create 400 jobs during the construction and 280 direct jobs related to the mine.
The total value of the project is estimated at over AUD 1 billion (over USD 727.3 million at the time of the announcement).
Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF)
NAIF is an AUD 5 billion lending facility created by the Australian Government to finance infrastructure projects located in northern Australia or with significant impact for that region, and that are of public benefit and engage the indigenous people.

The loans provided by NAIF have a lower interest rate than commercial lenders and borrowing tenors of up to 30 years.