The Port of Mackay has entered a new era of break bulk trade with the installation of a federally certified wash-down facility and quarantine-approved premises within the secure port precinct.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt, visiting Mackay this week, said the new facility meant North Queensland Bulk Ports would be able to wash down equipment landed at the port and destined for use in mines or other projects.
“The new equipment represents a significant upgrade of the level of services the port can offer while ensuring every possible step is taken to maintain high quarantine standards,” Mr Pitt said.
North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation (NQBP) chief executive officer Steve Lewis said the NSS facilities had already been used to clean a cargo of large mining equipment that arrived last week.
“This cargo — which we hope is the first of many — represents a significant demonstration of the port’s credentials as a major trade and logistics hub that supports the Mackay region and Bowen Basin and potentially the future Galilee Basin,” Mr Lewis said.
“The break bulk cargo arrived at the Port on the SCL Akwaba on 19 October loaded with around 8000 freight tonnes of mining equipment that is being brought in by mining services company Thiess from its overseas operations, as part of the company’s ongoing process of servicing Bowen Basin mining operations.”
NSS general manager Juliette Sperber said the new quarantine wash facility represented a considerable investment for NSS in Mackay.
“As a regional Queensland business employing locally, our hope is that NSS’s facility will increase trade through the port and rejuvenate industry in this great region,” she said.
The wash-down facility complements a range of other capital works and other initiatives to actively attract additional trade through the Port of Mackay, with a focus on break-bulk cargo associated with the mining and agricultural industries.
The works include:
- A $1.9 million upgrade of the port’s Harbour Road East intersection and construction of a new 2.3ha laydown area.
- Demolition of a redundant acid tank terminal and the creation of 0.62ha of laydown area.
- The fitting of protective jackets to steel piles on Wharf 1 and Wharf 5.
The works are part of a $28.4 million capital expenditure budget for NQBP ports over 2016-17.