Jeebropilly Coal Mine which is operated by New Hope Coal. Photo Sarah Harvey / The Queensland Times
Jeebropilly Coal Mine which is operated by New Hope Coal. Photo Sarah Harvey / The Queensland Times Sarah Harvey

Gas to replace coal as Qld economic driver

GAS is set to replace coal as a major economic driver in Queensland, a new report says, as the state enters a transitional period.

The Deloitte Access Economics report states the resource prices are challenging the Queensland economy, which is moving from a construction to mining phase.

The report stated gas would become increasingly important to the Queensland economy, and more mines might close as coal prices remain low.

"The export dividend from earlier investment in energy and resources is increasingly clear - the state now exports over 200 million tonnes of coals every year, and will undergo a surge in gas sales to the world from 2016 onwards," it read.

"We can't say we think that coal prices will undergo a Lazarus-like recovery at any stage. Those days are done."

Industry body Queensland Resources Council welcomed the report.

QRC chief executive Michael Roche stated diversity was a strength.

"The report confirms that Queensland's resources diversity is a key to its continuing role as a pillar of the economy," he said.

"This positive forecast could not have happened without strong bipartisan political support for the gas industry in Queensland.

However, anti-gas group Lock the Gate president Drew Hutton said gas faced an uncertain future.

"I think it's only to a limited extent that coal seam gas will be a part of the Queensland economy," he said.

"There are real questions as to where the international gas price will end up. Where will it level out and will that price be viable for LNG companies in Queensland to operate at?"

- APN NEWSDESK


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