The proposed $1.5 billion Sconi cobalt and nickel mine supporting 700 jobs is a step closer thanks to support from the Palaszczuk Government’s $175 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said as economies around the world dealt with the global coronavirus pandemic, Queensland’s continued health response meant the state’s plan for economic recovery had already started.
“Part of that plan is supporting the resources industry,” the Premier said.
“That’s what’s our support for Sconi is all about.
“Supporting this project supports North Queensland’s resources industry and supports North Queensland jobs.
“This project will support an estimated 500 jobs over a two-year construction period and create 289 long-term positions once fully operational.”
Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the wider North Queensland region would benefit.
“Not only do you have the jobs at the mine site, you have all the supply chain opportunities,” Mr Stewart said.
“The Greenvale community and its local economy and further down the pipeline to Townsville will see an estimated increase in Gross Regional Product by $2.2 billion over the life of the mine.
“That’s important for local manufacturers and local manufacturing jobs.”
Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher said minerals from the Sconi mine could go to powering the next generation of electric vehicles or used in our high-value aerospace sector.
“This project has the potential to support the regional economy and hundreds of jobs,” the Minister said.
“That’s why the Palaszczuk Government is proud to support the project as part of Queensland’s plan for economic recovery.”
Australian Mines is an ASX-listed resource company focusing on the production and supply of battery and technology metals for global markets.
Managing Director of Australian Mines Mr Benjamin Bell said the Sconi Project will feature a two-million-tonne per annum ore processing plant producing an estimated 7000 tonnes of cobalt sulphate and 46,800 tonnes of nickel sulphate per year over the mine’s initial 30-year life.
“Australian Mines expects there will be growing international demand for nickel and cobalt as car manufacturers are increasingly active in securing future supply chain requirements to meet their forecast electric vehicle commitments,” Mr Bell said.
On 25 January 2019, the Sconi Project was declared a prescribed project to assist streamlining the approvals process and fast-track the delivery of the project.
Subject to a financial investment decision, Australian Mines anticipates that the Sconi Project mine will commence operations in 2023.
The Jobs and Regional Growth Fund support remains conditional on securing offtake agreements with interested global battery metals customers.
Assistance from the Jobs and Regional Growth Fund will contribute toward two stages of the project’s development, from preliminary works through to, and including, establishment of the mine and processing infrastructure works.
In addition to the large quantities of nickel and cobalt, the mine will extract approximately 89 tonnes of scandium oxide each year that has applications in the specialist aluminium sector including aerospace and automotive industries.
Learn more about how the government’s Jobs and Regional Growth Fund is supporting the state’s effort to unite and recover from the impacts of the pandemic and helping to drive Queensland’s economic recovery.
Queensland’s plan for economic recovery: Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs, can be viewed here.