Asia Pacific’s first critical minerals facility set to be built in Queensland

Image Credit: Queensland Government

CIMIC Group company Sedgman has been selected as the managing contractor for the establishment of a new critical minerals processing facility in Queensland. 

The company will collaborate with the Queensland government to develop a detailed design and construction program for the Queensland Resources Common User Facility (QRCUF), which will target the processing of vanadium and other rare earth elements. 

Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick said QRCUF, which is the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific, will position Queensland at the forefront of innovation and commercialisation to drive advancements in manufacturing, defence, and scientific research. 

Located at the Cleveland Bay Industrial Park in Townsville, the new facility is expected to attract investments in advanced mineral manufacturing opportunities and accelerate the development of commercial mining projects in Queensland. 

The QRCUF will also enable mining companies to trial mineral processing techniques, demonstrate project feasibility at scale and provide the market with product samples to accelerate commercial development opportunities. 

It aims to support the growth of Queensland’s emerging critical minerals sector and help create good jobs in North Queensland.

“This facility will enable smaller mining companies to prove up their product and develop new opportunities for vanadium mining in Queensland,” Minister Dick said. “The efficient production of vanadium, used in redox flow batteries could supercharge Queensland’s renewable energy industry.”

Queensland has access to some of the world’s richest critical mineral-producing areas, with the North West Minerals Province assessed to hold deposits worth $500 billion. 

“Queensland has strong history as a mining state, and this Common User Facility will ensure we have a strong mineral future as well,” the minister said. “This facility will prepare Queensland for the future of clean energy production through the critical minerals the world needs.“

Grant Fraser, managing director for Sedgman, commended the Queensland government’s initiative to develop a critical minerals common user facility, calling it a “vital step” positioning Queensland and local companies at the forefront of the technology development required in the state’s energy transition.