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Premier's pitch: Get ready for hydrogen and Olympics to supercharge economy

Business

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has made it clear she believes the state’s nascent hydrogen industry and the 2032 Olympics will be the major economic drivers of Queensland’s emergence from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Palaszczuk, an unabashed fan of the potential of hydrogen to lift the state into a renewable energy superpower, said Queensland’s resources sector was undergoing “incredible transformation”.

“We are setting in place the framework to enable the investment that is going to come with it and these (industries) are going to mean long-term secure jobs,” she told a 700 people at a business function on Wednesday.

“The energy mix in Queensland is fantastic but it is going on this incredible transformation. at the moment and we are best placed because we are so abundantly rich in coal, in gas and renewables.”

“But hydrogen is definitely going to be the area that Queensland can seek to engage as being a leader in the world, especially with strong appetite from Japan and South Korea.”

In a speech clearly aimed at bolstering business confidence in Queensland’s future growth potential, Palaszczuk used her annual CEDA State of the State address to pitch hydrogen as an industry that would rival LNG in terms of its future economic heft.

She said foreign companies were already making big investments in the fuel, with Japan’s Iwatani Corporation undertaking feasibility on a project to export $4.2 billion in renewable hydrogen from Gladstone.

“In Townsville we are working with Sun Metals as they move to operate their refinery on 100% renewable energy by 2040 and use hydrogen trucking fleets,” she said.

She also appealed to the business community to take advantage of the opportunities for growth that Brisbane hosting the 2032 Olympics would bring.

“We need to harness all of the good ideas. We have so much untapped talent in this state,” she said.

She said the government wanted to hear from business about how it could facilitate trade deals or promote education and research.

“I always says the best says are ahead of us but the Olympics give us a focus..and it will absolutely supercharge Queensland for the decades to come.”

 

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