Gold Coast FIFO hub plan stall

The Gold Coast's plan to become a FIFO mining hub has ground to halt less than a year after it was announced.

According to Gold Coast airport chief Paul Donovan while a lot of ground work had been done the airport was still unable to convince many mining companies over its attractiveness as a new hub over Brisbane, reports.

"The airlines will fly wherever the mining companies want them to," Donovan said.

"I am impatient about getting some traction on this."

Last year Donovan began work on introducing flights from the Gold Coast to key mining regions and as a way to address unemployment in the region.

Paul Donovan said meetings between the airport company and airlines were taking place to introduce flights to mining areas including Mackay, Emerald and Gladstone.

''There is no better place to live than the Gold Coast, so the opportunity for people to live here and work somewhere else makes sense,'' he told local media at the time.

Donovan said flights from the Gold Coast to Mount Isa and Perth were already attracting mine workers working on fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) workers.

Queensland Treasurer Andrew Fraser suggested the Gold Coast should capitalise on FIFO workers to boost jobs when he visited the region last year.

Donovan now says the FIFO plan needs strong support from the council and may even enlist mining magnate Clive Palmer to help.

Charter flight operator AVMIN director Paul O'Brien said a major step in this FIFO hub plan is convincing mining companies and airlines of the available workforce here.
"Work needs to be done to show how many mine-workers there are on the Gold Coast who are flying out of other airports," O'Brien said.
Despite the stumbling blocks, BMA chief Stephen Dumble has highlighted the Gold Coast as a potential FIFO source.

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