Major mine in works, could open up nearly 4000 jobs

THERE could be 3900 jobs opening up in the Galilee Basin if a greenfield coal project proposal goes ahead.

Chinese company MacMines Austasia has submitted an environmental impact assessment to the Queensland Department of State Development which could have the $6.7 billion China Stone project realised.

During the construction phase it said 3900 jobs would be created, with 3400 in the operational phase.

The project would be 300km west of Mackay and would produce up to 38 million tonnes of thermal coal a year.

It would have a 50-year lifespan, including both open cut and underground segments to the operation.

A tailings plant, water storage facility, airstrip, accommodation village and power station were also proposed at the FIFO operation.

According to the MacMines Austasia website, it would contribute $1.7 million each year to the "Northern and Mackay regions" during operations phase.

Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said the application was a boost of confidence for the Mackay region.

"While we have a depressed market, we still have opportunity knocking for the Galilee basin," Mr Christensen said.

"Unfortunately Adani was the first cab off the rank and have already gone through three approvals. So this one won't be happening any time soon. But this is terrific news."

Resource Industry Network chairman Tony Caruso said the submission of the environmental impact assessment was a vote of confidence for the Mackay region, but the mine would be at least three years off getting approval.