Infrastructure to boost industry

THE WA Government is establishing new multi-user road, rail and port infrastructure in WA’s Great Southern region to encourage the development of plantation wood processing and related value-added projects in the Down Road area near the Mirambeena Industrial Estate.

Resources Development Minister Colin Barnett made the announcement while turning a sod to herald construction of the $50 million wood fibre chip mill that is expected to generate 230 jobs.

More than $8 million will be spent on constructing a new berth for the woodchip industry in Albany. The WA Government is providing $5 million worth of infrastructure to assist in the transportation of forestry timber to the mill and for the delivery of the woodchips to the Albany wharf for export.

The Oji Paper-Itochu Corporation of Japan woodchip mill is expected to start production in September 2001 at a rate of about 400,000 tonnes a year.

By 2007 the mill will be producing a million tonnes a year, providing export revenue of about $80 million.

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