Two years after the last mining exhibition, MineX has returned to Mount Isa with one of the largest mining expos in eastern Australia officially opening on Tuesday.
The three day event at Buchanan Park began with a trade-only day on Tuesday before throwing the doors open to the public on Wednesday and Thursday.
With over 80 stalls covering all aspects of mining, many deals are expected to be concluded over the three days and the event is another economic boost to the region following the ABC Triple J One Night Stand
On Monday night Mayor Joyce McCulloch joined organisers from Commerce North West and sponsors at the Buffs Club to welcome visitors to the exhibition, which has been running for over 20 years but for the first time is now biennial after missing a year in 2016.
Cr McCulloch admitted times had been tough in recent years but the future looked brighter, noting the $15m offer by the state government to help rebrick the Mount Isa Mines copper smelter would underpin the industry and support local workforces. “Now is the time to prepare for a positive future for the mining industry,” Cr McCulloch said.
“Mount Isa City Council is fully committed to maintain a cycle of growth and we can only benefit from a buoyant economy.”
Commerce North West president Travis Crowther thanked his board for putting on the event without any paid staff and also thanked Mount Isa Mines for their major sponsorship.
He also welcomed delegates when doors opened at Buchanan Park on Tuesday and hoped the opening day would be a chance for the industry to network and discuss business opportunities.
“The biggest difference from previous events is the new format and layout of the expo and the meet the buyers and business matching sessions on the trade-only day,” Mr Crowther said.
Core group’s executive director Jon Loraine discussed how technology can assist the development of future projects in the North West followed by an update on MMG Dugald River zinc project by operations manager Sam Rodda who said construction was over 60 percent complete and they were getting to “the pointy end of the project”.
Jemena gave an update on the Northern Gas Pipeline project from Tennant Creek with construction expected to start before the end of this year on the compressor station to be sited near Diamantina power station.