Drivers of Growth

What drives resource development? Queensland’s resource industry is an export business.  Like agriculture or tourism, we sell to a global market.

Global demand fundamentals

Queensland supplies the world with a broad range of elements, minerals, metals and commodities; but fundamentally we are in the business of supplying the world’s economic development.  Our resource exports are either energy fuels, like thermal coal, gas, or the building blocks of development (copper, zinc, aluminium and metallurgical coal for making steel).

While the drivers of demand in individual markets can, and do vary, what they all have in common is that economic development drives a demand for resources.  The industrialisation of Japan, then Korea through the 1950s and 1960s saw a huge demand for resources from Queensland.  While that foundation demand continues, it is now overlaid with demand from rapidly growing economies like India, China, and Vietnam.

The 2016 World Energy Outlook released by the International Energy Agency (IEA) each year underlines the scale of the economic opportunity that lies ahead for Queensland. According to the IEA global energy demand is set to grow by 37 percent by 2040.

A key driver in this growth of global demand for power generation is energy poverty, with 1.3 billion people having no access to electricity and 2.7 billion people without clean cooking facilities.

The IEA suggests that by 2040 world energy supply will be divided in four almost equal parts:

(i) low carbon technologies (renewable energy and nuclear),

(ii) oil,

(iii) natural gas and

(iv) coal.

Queensland has a big contribution to make across three of the four components of world energy supply.

The IEA projects that the global coal trade will grow by 40 percent by 2040. Our high quality thermal coal will see Queensland competing for our share of that growing demand.

For metallurgical coal, steel consumption is forecast to increase in economies undergoing industrial development, particularly China, India and South East Asia.

Queensland will contribute significantly to the forecast rise in the share of LNG in global gas trade. As early as 2020, Australia is on track to become the world’s largest source of LNG supply.

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