Coal, LNG performance defies resources industry opponents: QRC

Queensland’s resources sector, guided by record liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports and high demand for coal, continues to underpin the state’s economy, according to Queensland Resources Council (QRC) chief executive Ian Macfarlane.

Data released today revealed that LNG exports from Queensland totalled 20.2 million tonnes (Mt) in 2017, eclipsing the previous year’s record by 2.7Mt.

The LNG sector is forecast to continue its record export growth that is being driven by Asia. China was again the largest customer, receiving nearly 11.6Mt, followed by South Korea at 4Mt while Japan imported 2.5Mt.

Meanwhile, coal exports reached 210.8Mt in 2017, which was five per cent lower than the 2016 record of 220.8Mt.

The fall in coal was due to Cyclone Debbie’s impact on rail infrastructure in the first half of the year. According to Queensland Treasury, the cyclone decreased coal exports by 11Mt, so it effectively robbed the state of another record in coal exports.

Macfarlane said Green activists continued to claim the world was turning away from fossil fuels.

“In fact, the opposite is the case with Queensland coal exported to at least 37 different countries – five in the Americas – Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay – two in Africa – Algeria, South Africa – 12 in Asia – China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam – 16 in Europe – Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom – two in Middle East – Turkey, UAE,” Macfarlane said.

“Queensland LNG was exported to nine countries across the world, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and Hong Kong.”

Queensland’s combined coal and LNG industries contributed $46.7 billion to the state’s economy in 2016/17 and supported more than 230,000 full-time employees, Macfarlane added.