Korea Zinc Company (KZC) will invest around $300 million to expand its Australian subsidiary, Sun Metals Corporation (SMC), and create hundreds of new jobs in Townsville.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, who made the announcement alongside Sun Metals Chief Financial Officer Kathy Danaher, said the $300 million expansion of the Sun Metals Zinc Refinery will create many new jobs and increase zinc production by as much as 50,000 tonnes per year.
“I would like to thank Korea Zinc Company and its Australian subsidiary, SMC for showing such confidence in North Queensland and its workforce, and we look forward to continuing with this successful relationship into the future,” the Premier said.
“This is a huge day for Townsville and the surrounding region because the expansion is expected to support an estimated 350 jobs during construction, and there will be around 100 additional permanent refinery and logistic workers once operational.”
“Zinc production will increase from around 220,000 to 270,000 tonnes per year which is great news for North Queensland and for Sun Metals Corporation, and it contributes to my Government’s priorities which include creating jobs in a strong economy.”
SMC CEO Yun Choi said the support from the Premier and the State Government was pivotal for the announcement of the expansion to proceed.
“We’d really like to personally thank the Premier and her government for all their hard work has allowed for us to make this important announcement today,” Mr Choi said.
“SMC has consistently said the key to making today’s announcement was working out logistics around port access and access to the road network, thanks to the leadership of the Premier, those issues have now been resolved.”
“This announcement is great news for Townsville and also the greater Townsville region as we expect the expansion will have a significant impact to the regional economy.”
Member for Townsville Scott Stewart noted that the multimillion expansion follows the opening of SMC’s 125-megawatt solar farm at the site in August.
“The solar farm is one of the largest in the southern hemisphere and is the biggest in Australia,” he stated.
“The $200 million solar facility will produce up to one-third of the refinery’s energy needs ensuring the viability of the existing plant and supporting the expansion.”