Townsville Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - CLARE ARM­STRONG

A JOBS bo­nanza for Townsville is now im­mi­nent after Sun Me­tals gave the green light to a $ 300 mil­lion ex­pan­sion of its zinc re­fin­ery.

About 350 di­rect jobs will be cre­ated dur­ing con­struc­tion of the re­fin­ery ex­pan­sion in ad­di­tion to 100 on­go­ing jobs in op­er­a­tions and lo­gis­tics when it is com­plete. In to­tal the ex­pan­sion will gen­er­ate more than 820 di­rect and in­di­rect jobs for the Townsville re­gion.

Premier An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk is ex­pected to an­nounce the good news for Townsville job seek­ers to­day dur­ing her visit to the city.

It fol­lows her re­cent visit to South Korea for a trade mis­sion.

Sun Me­tals had sought an “ac­cept­able” long- term power sup­ply and cer­tainty over road and lo­gis­tics ac­cess to the Port of Townsville be­fore mak­ing a fi­nal de­ter­mi­na­tion on its pro­posed re­fin­ery ex­pan­sion.

Dur­ing Ms Palaszczuk’s trip to South Korea she met with top of­fi­cials from Korea Zinc Com­pany, par­ent to the Sun Me­tals Cor­po­ra­tion.

“This ex­pan­sion will bring hun­dreds more jobs to the North and will have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the re­gional econ­omy,” Ms Palaszczuk will say.

“This is a huge day for Townsville and the sur­round­ing re­gion.”

Sun Me­tals chief ex­ec­u­tive Yun Choi said the State Gov­ern­ment’s in­volve­ment had paved the way for the ex­pan­sion to pro­ceed.

“We’d re­ally like to per­son­ally thank the Premier and her gov­ern­ment for all the hard work that has al­lowed us to make this an­nounce­ment,” he said.

In March this year Sun Me­tals con­firmed it was work- ing to ver­ify a busi­ness case for the ex­pan­sion, in­clud­ing plant de­sign, chem­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing and in­fra­struc­ture re­quire­ments.

In ad­di­tion to the jobs cre­ated in con­struc­tion and on­go­ing op­er­a­tions, the ex­pan­sion is also ex­pected to boost other ar­eas of the re­gion’s econ­omy.

“The ex­pan­sion would also see an in­crease in eco­nomic ac­tiv­i­ties for Townsville, with sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in Townsville Port ac­tiv­i­ties, up­lift for lo­cal sup­pli­ers and con­trac­tors and also, via use of new refin­ing tech­nol­ogy, re­duced wa­ter us­age and en­vi­ron­men­tal foot­print,” Mr Yun Choi said in March.

Korea Zinc is one of the big­gest zinc pro­duc­ers world­wide. Its Sun Me­tals op­er­a­tion in Townsville pro­duces about 225,000 tonnes of zinc an­nu­ally. The zinc is used in a range of prod­ucts in­clud­ing steel pipe, steel wire, ve­hi­cle parts, anti- cor­ro­sion paint and elec­tronic parts. Ear­lier this year Sun Me­tals com­pleted con­struc­tion of a $ 200 mil­lion so­lar farm, which now pro­vides about 30 per cent of the re­fin­ery’s elec­tric­ity needs.

An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk.

Sun Me­tals CEO Yun Cho.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.