Central Queensland tops $1 billion in regional manufacturing activity

Central Queensland has emerged as the state’s regional manufacturing powerhouse, with local industry in and around the Fitzroy region contributing more than $1 billion annually to the Queensland economy.

Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke said the region’s manufacturing figures saw CQ ranked as the leading regional centre for manufacturing outside the south-east in terms of economic activity.

“Central Queensland has more than 500 manufacturing businesses, and together they contributed more than $1 billion to the Queensland economy in 2017-18,” Mr O’Rourke said.

Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga said with manufacturing across Queensland being celebrated during October, it was important to acknowledge the jobs being created for Queenslanders.

“By the end of the September quarter 2019, the local sector here in Central Queensland employed about 6000 people – jobs that are crucial for our region,” Mrs Lauga said.

Other strong manufacturing regions in Queensland include:

  • Wide Bay ($971 million annually, 9100 jobs, 878 businesses)
  • Darling Downs ($951.6 million, 10,100 jobs, 1092 businesses)
  • North Queensland ($843.2 million, 6900 jobs, 512 businesses)
  • Far North Queensland ($793.4 million, 6300 jobs, 822 businesses)
  • Mackay-Whitsunday ($682.2 million, 4400 jobs, 483 businesses)

Minister for Manufacturing Cameron Dick said the strong performances across many of Queensland’s regions highlight the importance of manufacturing as a job-creator and economic stimulator for the state.

“Manufacturing directly contributes about $20 billion annually to the Queensland economy and employs around 170,000 people,” Mr Dick said.

“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to growing the industry through initiatives like our $46 million Made in Queensland program and the Advanced Manufacturing 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan.”

Manufacturers in the Central Queensland region include Capricorn Sandstone Quarries (CSQ) of Stanwell, one of the many Queensland manufacturers expanding production through advanced manufacturing practices.

CSQ CEO Reece Gough said from their base in regional Queensland they’ll be securing new markets around the world for their sandstone, particularly in construction and landscaping products.

“We’ll become more globally competitive due to our excellent raw product and our advanced processing facilities,” Mr Gough said.

“With the help of a Queensland Government Made in Queensland grant we’ll soon be installing advanced splitting and veneer cutting equipment so we can further increase our capabilities and diversify our product range.”

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