ROBBIE Katter is calling on the Government to focus on a proposal to improve transport links in the North West.
The State Member for Mount Isa is urging Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe – who is visiting the North West on Wednesday and Thursday – to put supply chain issues at the forefront of discussions.
Mr Katter said a proposal for a Multi-User Rail Load-Out Facility in Cloncurry should be one of the priorities.
“I have been in discussions with the proponents of an exciting development for an all-weather storage, loading and hauling facility to handle bulk materials,” he said.
“This would be of great benefit to a number of industries in the region, particularly for the mining industry, but also agriculture, fuel, cement and general containerised freight.”
“A project of such importance and to the region with the potential to ease a key infrastructure bottleneck should be of significant interest to the Minister.”
Mr Katter said Cloncurry continued to be a region moving ahead with development and economic activity.
“Data shows that the resources sector already generates a third of the North West Minerals Province’s gross regional product and more than half the region’s jobs so anything that can be done to stimulate the industry, such as improving supply links, is a positive step,” he said.
“The mining sector in Cloncurry alone directly supports several hundred employees and businesses, along with generating $140 million in royalties to the State.’
“There are a number of mining developments in the region which are due to hit production in the very near future, and also some marginal projects which will benefit from reduced transport costs and better access to critical infrastructure”
Mr Katter said issues relating to accessibility on the Great Northern Rail Line could be significantly reduced with the facility.
“The facility will increase the number of freight options for existing and future mining centres projects, enabling the region to build on its position as a world leading commodities hub in transport what is an incredibly competitive global market,” he said.