The Port of Bundaberg is now home to a new $21.9 million bulk goods conveyor designed to enhance export opportunities in Queensland’s Wide Bay-Burnett region.

Now officially open, the conveyor is expected to provide competitive and efficient loading facilities for a wide range of bulk minerals and agricultural products – from sands and sugar, to light grain and wood pellets.

The conveyor received $17.7 million in funding from the Federal Government, $3.2 million from Sugar Terminals and additional funding from Gladstone Ports Corporation on behalf of the Queensland Government.

Following rigorous testing, the new facilities – including a 250m conveyer, two transfer towers and modifications to existing ship loading equipment – are already in use with the first shipment of product expected to be shipped in early April 2024.

The 22,000t shipment of silica sand – produced by local Bundaberg business, Sunstate Sands – is bound for South Korea where it will be used in the manufacture of glass.

Delivered by Sugar Terminals and e2o, construction supported 335 jobs, with local procurement including structural fabrication, painting and fencing and all trade labour.

Federal Minister for Regional Development, Kristy McBain, said that it’s fantastic to see the modern and fit-for-purpose conveyor in action helping to increase exports of bulk commodities from the Port of Bundaberg.

“For every business, time is money – which is why we invested over $17 million towards more efficient and multi-purpose loading facilities, enabling a faster exit from the port – which we know is under more demand than ever. 

“This will support businesses in the Wide Bay-Burnett region to expand their capabilities and services, driving economic growth and the creation of local employment opportunities – building on the 335 jobs supported during construction.”

Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Bart Mellish, said, “This is a significant milestone for a fantastic project for Bundaberg. 

“It’s great to see local businesses and workers have played a big role in the project too.

“The Miles Government has looked forward to the official opening of the conveyor, which will play a key role in the economic future of the Wide-Bay Burnett region.”

Queensland Member for Bundaberg, Tom Smith, said, “The Port of Bundaberg provides exciting opportunities for industry and jobs growth across the region and this project is an example of just that. 

“The completion of this conveyor saw some 109 jobs for Bundy locals during the construction phase and will continue to ensure long-term employment for many years to come.

“With a number of other infrastructure projects underway currently at the Port of Bundaberg, I know that our region’s economy is set to grow stronger and stronger as we work as a government with our trading partners to establish further investment opportunities.”

Gladstone Ports Corporation’s (GPC) CEO, Craig Haymes, said, “This project is of strategic importance to the region and the Port of Bundaberg.

“This is about expanding the export capabilities of the port and unlocking opportunities for regional producers to compete on a global scale.

“The new facilities have the potential to increase our existing throughput in the Port of Bundaberg by more than five times and accommodate new products.

“At GPC, we are dedicated to developing the port to operate at its full potential in a measured and sustainable manner to bring further growth and prosperity to the Wide Bay Burnett region.

“We are proud to be working closely with Sugar Terminals Limited and e2o and we are excited to celebrate this milestone.”

Sugar Terminals Limited’s (STL) CEO, David Quinn, said, “STL is proud to have led the construction and delivery of this new multi user conveyor project adjacent to our Bundaberg bulk sugar terminal.

“STL’s project team, which included Linear Engineering, Loftus Contracting and e2o (a subsidiary of Clough) have collectively delivered a world-class facility that will enable a range of bulk commodities to be handled safely and efficiently.

“This project not only provided local jobs during construction but will also facilitate new opportunities in the broader region as users take advantage of this facility. 

“Importantly, STL has now had the opportunity to fully commission this infrastructure following the successful loading of a 22,000t shipment of silica sand for our customer Sunstate Sands which we safely and successfully completed recently.

“We now look forward to future shipments from both existing and new customers.”

e2o’s General Manager, Craig Gibbins, said, “I am incredibly proud of the team involved in the delivery of this project.

“What I am most proud of is that it was delivered with zero harm to any of our employees, which is a testament to the safety culture at e2o as the Australian subsidiary of Clough, part of the Webuild Group.”

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