Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche says the demand from Asia for coal and gas will underpin growth of the resources sector for decades to come.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche says the demand from Asia for coal and gas will underpin growth of the resources sector for decades to come. Pam Mckay Rokresources

Mining in Central Queensland is here for the long term

THE resources sector has a long-term future.

That was the message delivered to Central Queensland yesterday by Michael Roche, the Queensland Resources Council chief executive.

In Rockhampton for briefings with government, conservation and business leaders, Mr Roche said the demand out of Asia for coal and gas would underpin growth in the industry for decades to come.

He said the current trading environment for the coal industry was a "test of mettle" for Bowen Basin producers.

"The latest export data suggests that they are responding skilfully to global market realities by reducing costs and increasing volumes to reinforce Queensland's position as a supplier of choice to Asia," Mr Roche said.

Industry analysts report Queensland coal exports jumped again last month, with metallurgical export terminals accounting for a large slice of a 34% increase in exports compared with August 2012.

Mr Roche said the Queensland coal industry was positioning itself for the inevitable revival of coal demand, driven by China and India.

"The economic aspirations and development of these countries has been delayed, not abandoned. However, we must never lose sight of the fact that no one is obliged to beat a path to Queensland's door for minerals and energy commodities.

"Our responsibility is to make sure we mine it in a responsible way and, as an industry, we are investing in low-emission technologies. That's exactly what we are doing."

Mr Roche said the state's resources diversity had provided a buffer against the full impact of the coal downturn.



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