The Galilee Basin is set to create 25,000 new jobs with new mines being developed by Hancock Coal, Waratah Coal, Adani, and several other companies ““ and a major expansion of the Abbot Point export terminal and associated infrastructure.
In addition to new mines, six companies have announced major expansion projects ““ BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Anglo, Vale, Xstrata and Peabody.
And $1billion a year will be spent by the North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation for eight years to convert the Abbot Point terminal into a 12-berth port so it can handle coal exports which will increase from the current 20Mtpa (million tonne per annum) to 320Mtpa.
The opening up of the Galilee Basin is a tremendous opportunity for the Whitsunday region, Enterprise Whitsundays CEO Andrei Koeppen said yesterday.
The mining activity will bring with it demand for housing, food, transport, services and recreation.
The boom is expected to create 25,000 new jobs for the region when the building of new infrastructure is taken into consideration, Mr Koeppen said.
Rail link to unlock new coal mining exports and jobs
Construction of the “missing rail link”ť connecting the Galilee Basin to Abbot Point would unlock a new Queensland coal resource with BHP Billiton being given the capacity to export 50-60Mtpa, Hancock Coal getting 60Mtpa, and other companies being allocated 180Mtpa.
The Abbot Point expansion will provide significant economic benefit to both Mackay and Townsville and would create 2700 direct full-time jobs and almost 7000 flow-on jobs in Queensland during peak construction.