NAIF LOAN: 200 jobs on the cards in major CQ beef project
TWO hundred jobs are on the cards as Central Queensland's first Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan - $24 million to Signature Onfarm Pty Ltd - reaches the 'contractual close' stage.
The loan will be used to build a $37 million specialist beef processing facility and on-site employee accommodation near Clermont.
Resources, Water and Northern Australia Minister Keith Pitt said that meant contracts had been signed, including by the Queensland Government, and soon the proponent could draw on the NAIF loan.
Minister Pitt said the Signature Onfarm Project would be used by CQ cattle producers and other beef companies to process cattle at an abattoir located closer to their farms.
"The result will be increased carcass yields for producers and, ultimately, growth for the CQ premium beef brand," Minister Pitt said.
"The project is forecast to benefit the broader Clermont community to the tune of more than $63 million.
"It's going to create 200 construction jobs and up to 70 ongoing jobs, and allow the transport and sale of CQ premium beef to both domestic and overseas markets.
"It's also going to create training and development opportunities for local young people in the beef industry, and opportunities for indigenous employment and indigenous business participation in the beef supply chain."
Assistant Minister for Northern Australia and Capricornia MP Michelle Landry said the funding was an investment in local families and communities.
"This loan will encourage more investment in CQ and assist our graziers in opening up tangible opportunities in new domestic and export markets," she said.
"CQ beef is top quality and the envy of many beef-producing countries.
"With this beef processing facility in Clermont, CQ will be centre stage in providing domestic and export markets with products that meet modern day consumer tastes," Ms Landry said.
The facility is being developed by the Angus family, a leader in the cattle industry in CQ and Australia.
"This project is very important to our region, one of the largest beef producing regions in Australia with no local processing in our shire," Signature Beef co-owner Josie Angus said.
"Adding local processing capacity, coupled with the provision of service processing to allow more producers to take their own branded products direct to market, is a key feature of this development."
NAIF has committed $915 million in Queensland.
The total value of NAIF's loan commitments is nearly $2 billion, across 17 investment decisions in Northern Australia, and two conditional approvals.