Cool coal collaboration

BOWEN Basin mining and support companies and business are collaborating to find solutions to challenges facing the industry with the launch of the pilot METS Ignited Bowen Basin Cluster Program.
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A cluster pilot is hoping to boost Queensland METS collaboration.

Noel Dyson

The program is a joint initiative between the Queensland government and mining equipment, technology and services industry growth centre METS Ignited.

The state’s METS sector contributes $7 billion to the economy each year and employs almost 20,000 people. It has huge potential for further domestic growth and even greater expansion overseas.

Queensland Minister for State Development Dr Anthony Lynham said encouraging companies to collaborate was one of the key actions the Queensland government’s METS 10-year roadmap and action plan had identified.

“The program offers an opportunity for companies that have complementary skills and expertise to collaborate to solve real business problems to deliver more long-term jobs and business opportunities for regional Queenslanders,” he said.

The Queensland government plans to generate more than 3000 extra mining technology jobs over the next decade.

Challenges to collaboration between the industries have previously tackled include accelerating the timeline of rehabilitation and remediation on operating mine sites and installing environmental monitoring systems in underground operations to improve miners’ health and safety.

The Roadmap and Action Plan are part of the government’s $420 million Advance Queensland plan to create knowledge-based jobs of the future for Queenslanders.

It has been backed by a $7 million mining technology specific investment.

METS Ignited general manager industry implementation Ian Dover said the program would help develop industry clusters of suppliers and customers as it would bring together METS companies with complimentary areas of expertise to collaborate to solve mining company challenges. 

“In a clustering business model, our local METS companies share experience to better understand how collaborating can deliver more value to their customers, in this case the mining companies in Australia and overseas,” he said. 

“As the industry growth centre for the METS sector, METS Ignited is providing $500,000 through its Collaborative Project Fund to encourage local METS companies to collaborate with their customers to progress real business opportunities that have significant benefit to the industry as well as to the community. 

“This money will be matched by the Queensland Government who will inject a further $500,000 to take these groups of businesses to a greater level of business and sustainability via connecting and leveraging their products and services.”

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said local miners would identify their challenges and local mining technology companies would collaborate on solutions.

“We want to make it easier for companies to turn their ideas into commercial products for market,” she said.

Applications for the program can be made through www.metsignited.org and close on October 30.

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