Sunshine State sees ray of hope with copper mine opening

The new $640 million copper mine near Cloncurry is being touted as another sign that Queensland has finally begun to overcome the worldwide resources price slump, according to the state government.

Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland Coralee O’Rourke said the official opening of CuDeco’s Rocklands Copper Mine was good news for the economy and for the region.

“Today we mark the opening of a $640 million world-class facility and its first shipment of Queensland copper, which will support up to 120 jobs,” Mrs O’Rourke said.

“Queensland’s North West Mineral Province is known around the world as a highly prospective region and the opening of Rocklands Copper mine demonstrates the area continues to have a great future ahead.

“During 2014-15, mineral production in Queensland was valued at $8.6 billion – and more than 70 per cent of that amount was sourced from Queensland’s North West Mineral Province.

“While Queensland’s mining sector has faced a challenging period in recent years, there continues to be green shoots across the state – highlighted by today’s official opening and the first shipment of exported copper.”

Mrs O’Rourke also noted that the Palaszczuk Government was considering recent recommendations by the North West Minerals Province Taskforce to help boost future exploration and production in the region.

“We need to think differently and innovatively to unlock the next generation of mines and the work coming out through the Taskforce is certainly looking at how to make this happen,” she said.

“The opportunities for regional Queenslanders are evident – with Rocklands mine supporting jobs and putting accommodation in place to ensure the local community shares the flow-on economic benefits.”

Overall, Queensland is the 13th largest copper producer in the world.

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