Reception in Support of the Queensland Resources Sector
The Honourable Anthony Lynham MP, representing our Premier; elected representatives; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen. It is my great pleasure, and Kaye’s, to welcome to Government House today this distinguished group of senior representatives from private and public sector organisations active in our State’s resources sector.
The discovery and development of natural resources appear over and over as major milestones in Queensland’s history, particularly in the State’s economic development.
A succession of gold rushes brought many tens of thousands of people into the State in the 19th century.
The coal industry grew from shovel and wheelbarrow mining on the banks of the Brisbane River in the mid-19th century, to a global-scale industry today.
Mineral discoveries around Mount Isa first brought mining to the area in the 1920s.
The State’s oil and gas reserves were tapped and commercially developed from the 1960s onwards, as were the huge bauxite deposits in North Queensland.
Directly and indirectly, the extraction, processing and transport of these resources continue to provide a substantial proportion of the State’s employment, investment, wealth creation, and royalties to governments.
This is particularly so in the regions. And Kaye and I have today returned from our 79th visit to a regional centre since my being sworn in as your Governor. That was aboard the Spirit of the Outback, from Emerald to Longreach, in the Vice-Regal and heritage carriages.
I was asked this morning on ABC Western Queensland in Longreach what message I would bring back to Brisbane.
It was a simple one, I said, and one which needn’t explication really to those in the mining and resources sector: we must, in a central way, support our regions.
The regions, and the people who live there, are vital to our State economically, and also socially. And those of us in the metropolis should visit, and frequently. The genuine disposition of our fellow Queenslanders in regional parts enriches us all!
The downstream products of resources development also provide us with the necessities of modern life.
The domestic mining industry has itself generated a number of highly successful exporters of goods and services, taking Queensland expertise all over the world.
Resources activity takes place overwhelmingly in regional parts of this huge State, bringing benefits to communities well outside the south-east corner.
And the industry is a major supporter of community organisations in many locations in Queensland.
The resources industry remains a fundamental element of the State’s economy.
Those investing in our resources sector undertake significant financial risk, underlining their confidence in Queensland’s future.
For all of these reasons, Kaye and I were keen to highlight the resource sector’s great importance to Queensland, through this evening’s event.
We thank all of those whose investment of hard work, commitment, and financial resources, have brought about the long-term development of our State’s resources sector.
We thank you for the wonderful contributions you have made, and continue to make, to Queensland and to Queenslanders.
We wish Queensland’s resources sector every success in seizing the opportunities and meeting the challenges of the future.