Discount Win for Miners in Qld Budget

Miners in north Queensland will be given millions of dollars in discounts on freight charges in next week’s budget in a win for the state’s resources industry.

An $80 million scheme aimed at speeding up investment in the resources sector in the state’s northwest is among a string of budget measure the government hopes will keep regional economies ticking.

On Sunday, Treasurer Jackie Trad and Ports Minister Mark Bailey continue the Labor government’s efforts to appeal to the regions following the May federal election.

The Mount Isa line is the only way miners can get their material from the west to the coast.

Ms Trad said offering $80 million in freight discounts over the next four years was aimed at accelerating investments in an area that holds 75 per cent of the state’s base metal and mineral deposits.

She also hopes it will create more jobs in a region that is crying out for them.The announcement comes after a $350 million commitment to upgrade the Mount Isa Line over the next five years.

It is already more efficient following extensive repairs in the wake of floods that damaged or washed away 300km of track in February.”

The commitment underlines our commitment to backing regional communities and regional jobs,” Ms Trad said.

The state government has also promised $30 million to build a new freight terminal at the Townsville port, with another $18 million to come from the Port of Townsville.

Centrex Metals chief executive Simon Slesarewich said the investment was “integral” to growing mines and exploration in the northwest minerals province.

Ms Trad says the government plans to keep spending to create jobs rather than making cuts to address soaring debt.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Sunday said the government would spend $929 million more on health in the next year, bringing the overall health budget to $19.2 billion.

Some of that money will be used to hire hundreds more nurses, doctors and ambulance officers, along with major redevelopments at the Caboolture, Logan and Ipswich hospitals.

It was also announced an additional $17.1 million would be spent over the next four years on the state’s program for managing sharks at popular beaches.

Original article published by 9News-June9, 2019. Click here to view.

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