PORT BOOST: Consultation is now underway to see if the Port of Bundaberg should be included in a State Development Area.
PORT BOOST: Consultation is now underway to see if the Port of Bundaberg should be included in a State Development Area. Mike Knott BUN120516SILICA2

Development area at Port is one step closer

BUNDABERG is one step closer to having a State Development Area issued around the Port of Bundaberg.

The move, if it gets the go ahead, will fast-track industry and jobs for the Bundaberg region.

The Port of Bundaberg has huge potential being the next port north of Brisbane and the state’s only other east coast trading port outside the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

That potential has already been boosted with the start of the $20 million gas pipeline and $70 million Knauf plasterboard factory at the port.

Member for Bundaberg Leanne Donaldson announced consultation on the SDA opens next week.

She said the Queensland Government was committed to harnessing opportunities for regional growth and an SDA would allow for an area of land to be available for future development of local industry.

“Now it is time for our community and other stakeholders to share their views as the next stage in the SDA establishment process,” she said.

“This includes seeking feedback on a boundary for the proposed SDA that could include the Port of Bundaberg and land on both sides of the Burnett River.

“The government wants to strike the right balance between the interests of stakeholders, including landholders, proponents and the community.”

Bundaberg Mayor Jack Dempsey has welcomed the move.

Cr Dempsey said a development area around the port would stimulate the economy and promote confidence and jobs growth.

“I am very pleased that this consultation process is under way, as the opportunities that would come from a State Development Area around the port would greatly benefit Bundaberg and the Wide Bay Region,” Cr Dempsey said.

“The establishment of a State Development Area is exactly what our region needs to facilitate economic growth and employment opportunities.”

Local economic consultant Neil McPhillips urged everyone to get behind the SDA saying it was a “real opportunity for Bundaberg”.

“Everyone needs to have a say in this,” Mr McPhillips said.

“Its’ a big, big opportunity and encourages job creation.

“If we want Bundy to develop jobs, new business and old business to expand we need to get behind this.

“It would be a huge opportunity to overlook.”

Queensland currently has nine SDAs, which include industrial areas such as Abbot Point and Gladstone, infrastructure corridors including Callide and the Galilee Basin and major public utility sites such as the Lady Cliento Children’s Hospital in Brisbane.

Formal consultation for the proposed Bundaberg SDA runs from now to July 18.

A decision on the proposed SDA is expected in late 2016.



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