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Infrastructure funding available for resource communities

Rio Tinto has awarded $250 million worth of construction contracts to two contractors for work at the Robe River Joint Venture’s West Angelas iron ore mine in the Pilbara.

Applications are now open for infrastructure project funding as part of the Queensland Government’s $100 million Resources Community Infrastructure Fund.

Deputy Premier and State Development Minister Steven Miles said the fund would deliver infrastructure in regional communities that would improve liability, support jobs and provide a boost to the economy as part of Queensland’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan.

“According to the QRC the resources sector employs around 84,000 workers and directly supports 15,200 Queensland businesses,” Miles said.

“Despite the challenges COVID-19 has brought, our resources sector has been able to continue operating throughout the pandemic, helping support our economy.

“Not-for-profit organisations and local governments in resource communities are now able to apply for between $100,000 and $8 million for infrastructure projects that will benefit their communities.”

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Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the Fund is a voluntary partnership between the Queensland Government, resource companies, and the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

“The government has partnered with resource companies to see investments in the communities that support them,” Stewart said.

“The Queensland Government has committed $30 million to the Fund with participating Queensland resources companies contributing the remaining $70 million.

“These communities are critical to rebuilding Queensland’s economy. And these new infrastructure projects will create more jobs and more opportunities for regional Queenslanders.”

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said the Queensland Government backs the resources industry.

“Queensland resource companies have a track record of partnering closely with local communities in a range of social, training and employment initiatives,” Gilbert said.

Chair of the expert Advisory Committee Tony Mooney said the partnership was a great opportunity to make a real difference by funding much needed community infrastructure in resource communities.

“The Advisory Committee is expecting strong interest and a broad range of applications in this first round,” Mooney said.

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