UPDATE 1.30pm: Mining veteran George Jones has announced his retirement as chairman of aspiring Mid-West magnetite producer Gindalbie Metals.
Mr Jones will be replaced by former Deloitte Perth managing partner Keith Jones, who was today appointed to the company's board as a non-executive director.
The official changeover will take place on April 9.
Mr Jones said that with the commissioning and ramp-up of the company's flagship Karara project now well advanced, he believed that the official opening of the project on April 9 marked an appropriate time to hand over the reins.
"For some time I have wanted to reduce my work-load and be in a position to spend more time with my wife Penny and my family," he said.
"After resuming the chairmanship of Gindalbie in 2010 following the tragic loss of Geoff Wedlock in West Africa, I believed very strongly that it was important to see the project through the final stages of development and into production.
"Production of DSO hematite has already ramped up to above our targeted 2mtpa level and the commissioning of the Karara concentrator is going extremely well, with no material issues encountered."
Mr Jones said he was confident the project would achieve a production rate of 8mtpa by the end of April.
He said he would remain involved in the WA resource industry through his ongoing role as chairman of PCF Capital and would continue to support several charitable ventures that were close to his heart.
In January, Keith Jones announced his retirement as managing partner of Deloitte Perth after 15 years in the position and 40 years with the firm.
He has since been appointed national chairman of Deloitte Australia.
Meanwhile Gindalbie today announced an $18.8 million first-half loss as it continues the commissioning and ramp-up of Karara, a 50/50 joint venture with China's Ansteel.Gindalbie shares closed off half a cent at 24.5 cents.