RNM Director Robert Nioa. Picture: Jack Tran
RNM Director Robert Nioa. Picture: Jack Tran

$60m plant to bring 100 new jobs to struggling city

THE struggling regional city of Maryborough is set to get a massive boost with the Palaszczuk Government approving a grant for a $60 million munitions factory.

The Courier-Mail can reveal a $7.5 million grant from the Government's Jobs and Regional Growth Fund will be given to the Rheinmetall Nioa Munitions joint venture.

State Development Minister Cameron Dick, who will reveal the grant plans today, last night said up to 100 new full-time jobs would be created when the plant begins operations in 2022.

The munitions factory comes after Rheinmetall chose to build its state-of-the-art Boxer combat vehicles in the Sunshine State in a $5 billion deal with the Federal Government.

Mr Dick said the munitions factory was another significant coup for Queensland.

"This project ticks all the boxes when it comes to ensuring our khaki state's defence industry continues to march forward," he said.

"As Queensland's first manufacturing minister for many years, I'm committed to continue delivering more manufacturing jobs throughout the state, particularly in our regions."

 

The Wide Bay region has been struggling with high unemployment with almost 20 per cent of young people in the area without work, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics figures.

The Palaszczuk Government has pumped rail contracts into the city's Downer EDI rail workshops in a bid to prevent the job queue from growing longer.

The factory will only forge the munitions shells with the charging part of the production to happen elsewhere.

RNM Director Robert Nioa said Maryborough was an ideal location for the project.

"The shell forging plant will be one of a kind in Australia, contributing to the establishment of sovereign capability in the state to support the Australian Defence Force and defence exports, while creating around 100 full-time jobs when the plant is fully operational," he said.

Mr Dick urged the Morrison Government to deliver on its conditional agreement to provide funding towards the project.

"It's time Prime Minister Scott Morrison turned the federal government's provisional commitment, made last year, into a genuine one," Mr Dick said.

"Maryborough needs these jobs."