In November 2012, following a public tender process, Kimberley Agricultural Investment (KAI) was announced as the preferred proponent for the project. A Development Agreement was subsequently signed between the State and KAI on 6th December 2013 for the development of 13,400ha into irrigated farmland under Stage 2 of the Ord Irrigation Expansion Project.
Under the Ord Development Agreement
, KAI has committed to the development of 7,400ha of the Goomig farm area land with an option to develop a further 6,000ha of Knox Plain lands.
The Ord Development Agreement can be seen as a staged investment process with the company committed to achieving significant milestones that, if met,will lead to a 50 year lease with a 25 year option for renewal. KAI’s committed investment under the Development Agreement is estimated to be $200 million.
Over the next four years, the state expects KAI to:
- create on-farm infrastructure
- develop and crop the Goomig Farm Area
- commence construction of roads and irrigation infrastructure for the Knox Plain land.
Potential future development
There are a number of land areas that are currently being investigated for potential future land release. These include Carlton Hill (approximately 6,000ha) and Cockatoo Sands (4,000ha potentially up to 30,000ha).