Townsville Enterprise will arrive in Cloncurry and Mount Isa today to finish a 1000-kilometre road trip, highlighting the importance of the North West to the Townsville business grouping and the future of Queensland.
Travelling from Townsville to Mount Isa, their North West Queensland road trip was to demonstrate how unlocking the value of the North West Minerals Province will drive new jobs and assist Queensland's recovery post COVID-19.
Townsville Enterprise CEO Patricia O'Callaghan and Director of Policy and Investment Wayde Chiesa will meet with leaders from major mining operations including Hughenden's Kennedy Energy Park, South32 Cannington mine, Incitec Pivot, MMG Dugald River and Glencore Mount Isa as well as local government representatives, regional chambers of commerce and community representatives along the corridor.
The decision to 'hit the road' comes after a recent Townsville Enterprise mining and resources round table where member feedback highlighted the need for Government policy and regulation reviews to free up red tape and fully develop the economic opportunities in the North West.
North West Qld Road Trip Day 2 we toured @Windlab Kennedy Energy Park, retracking of Mt Isa/TSV rail line & gained a deeper understanding of how enabling infrastructure projects & community vision can unlock jobs & investment for the North. #morethanmininghttps://t.co/Nc9POOQhFy— TownsvilleEnterprise (@TSVEnterprise) June 23, 2020
"The North and North West Queensland mining sector is a significant contributor the national economy employing over 20,000 people," Ms O'Callaghan said.
"The State and Federal Government has a focus on advanced manufacturing and through government support there is potential to turbocharge this sector which employs thousands of people. This is a sector that has critical supply chain linkages to metal refining and port facilities in Townsville, with billions of dollars in mineral commodities handled through the Port of Townsville each year."
Ms O'Callaghan said that as we move towards recovery from COVID-19, infrastructure investment will be critical to recovery and stressed the importance of a nation-building infrastructure program.
"Our trip aims to focus attention on these critical priorities by working with media and our social media channels to highlight the barriers and opportunities for growth," she said.
Townsville Enterprise Director of Policy and Investment Wayde Chiesa said that there has never been a more critical time to invest into the North and North West to support recovery for the State.
"Through the right policy framework and infrastructure investment, we have the potential to unlock the north, progress the state and realise new jobs and opportunities for North Queenslanders," Mr Chiesa said
"While it is important to invest in future infrastructure projects, there is also a real need to focus on the sustainability of the current operations, so our local skilled workers can continue to live in the region."
"The mining and resources sector have operated in a challenging environment over the past decade and we need to ensure we put the right policy and infrastructure in place so we can leverage from these industries to help bring the State's economy out of this crisis stronger than before."
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