The resources sector continues to underpin the Queensland economy with record coal and LNG exports over the year to December 2016 despite efforts by foreign-funded activists to delay vital natural resources projects.
New data released today reveals that coal exports from Queensland in 2016 totalled 221 million tonnes (mt), eclipsing last year’s record by 1 mt and LNG exports more than tripled to 17.5 mt. This has been an enormous boost to the Queensland economy, providing vital export income, royalties and jobs for Queenslanders.
The export figures were achieved with strong numbers across all of Queensland’s ports including Gladstone, Abbot Point, Dalrymple Bay – with Hay Point leading the way with a 10 per cent annual increase in volumes to 49 mt. December’s coal exports reached 20.7 mt which is highest month on record.
Green activists continue to claim the world is turning away from coal and fossil fuels. In fact, the opposite is the case with Queensland coal and LNG exported to more than 27 countries in Europe, South America, Asia and the Middle East.
The LNG sector is forecast to continue its record export growth that is being driven by China and Europe. The latest report by the Office of the Chief Economist estimates China’s LNG imports to have increased by 28 per cent in 2016 and Europe is forecast to increase by 21 per cent a year until 2018.
In addition to a major global LNG supplier, Queensland is in a prime position with its high-quality thermal and coking coal to continue to be one of the main players in global coal exports and the sector contributed more than a $1 billion windfall to the state’s coffers this financial year.
These extra funds will be used to pay for Queenslanders’ everyday needs, for the teachers that educate our children, the nurses and doctors who look after our health and the police force that keeps us safe.
As we know from our current economic data, Queensland’s coal industry delivered a $32.7 billion economic contribution in 2015/16 and supported more than 183,000 employees across the state. On top of this, the gas industry contributed $12.8 billion and over 65,000 employees.