Board visits Gladstone to discuss investment opportunities

  • 19 Jun 2024
  • Media Release

Our Board visited Gladstone to meet with stakeholders, including Alpha HPA, to discuss investment opportunities and infrastructure needs, with a focus on economic growth and employment.

NAIF Board Gladstone visit to Alpha on Board visits Gladstone to discuss investment opportunities

The Board of the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) visited Gladstone this week to meet with local stakeholders and discuss further potential investment opportunities in the region.

The visit included meeting with Alpha HPA, a company developing a high-purity alumina project in Gladstone, which NAIF is backing with a $200 million loan, as well as discussions with other local proponents and stakeholders about infrastructure priorities that could drive economic growth and employment.

NAIF Chair Tracey Hayes said the visit provided valuable insights into the infrastructure needs and development prospects in the Gladstone region.

"Gladstone is a key hub of economic activity in regional Queensland and has exciting plans and opportunities in industries like resources, manufacturing and logistics," Ms Hayes said. "Meeting face-to-face with proponents and hearing directly about their plans was extremely beneficial for the Board."

"NAIF exists to finance infrastructure that unlocks further private investment and generates public benefit across northern Australia. The Gladstone region has significant potential for NAIF to support projects that create new jobs, business opportunities and economic diversification."

During the visit, the Board toured the proposed site for Alpha HPA's high-purity alumina project and met with the company's management team. NAIF’s $200 million loan to the company was announced in April 2024.

The Alpha HPA project in is expected to create around 490 jobs during construction and more than 200 jobs (direct and indirect) on completion.

"Alpha HPA's project could help establish a new high-value manufacturing industry in Gladstone, exporting critical minerals to global markets," Ms Hayes said. "It's the type of project that aligns well with NAIF's goal of facilitating economic growth across a range of sectors."

"Commercial lending appetite is low for many Critical Minerals, and for HPA there is almost no commercial appetite. Without NAIF and other Government agency involvement to fill this funding gap, the project was unlikely to proceed." 

"The project is a good strategic fit for NAIF as it provides an opportunity to deliver key Government Policy Priorities such as realising the Critical Mineral Strategy, contributing to Australia’s clean energy transition and creating opportunities and economic growth in Australia’s regional communities. There is also strong alignment with the Queensland Government’s policy to support regional economic development."

The Board also had the opportunity to meet with Gladstone Regional Council, Gladstone Ports Corporation, local industry groups and Indigenous organisations about infrastructure priorities and opportunities for potential NAIF investment.

"Engaging with the local community is vital to ensuring NAIF's investment decisions deliver genuine public benefit and support the region's long-term economic aspirations," Ms Hayes said.

"The discussions in Gladstone provided important local context about infrastructure bottlenecks, growth industries and the role NAIF could play in unlocking the region's potential through targeted project financing."

Ms Hayes said the visit reinforced the Board's focus on working closely with proponents and stakeholders to identify investment opportunities that support economic diversification and job creation in northern Australia.

As part of the Australian Government’s agenda to grow northern Australia, NAIF has to-date supported a portfolio of ambitious and transformational projects ranging from large-scale resource and energy developments to social infrastructure – including universities – to airport upgrades, and agriculture and aquaculture projects. These projects are forecast to generate around $32 billion in economic benefit, supporting thousands of jobs across the north.

In Queensland NAIF's total investments in projects stand at around $1.5 billion.

Share this page