A new fuel terminal was opened today in Mackay, which will boost fuel import capabilities in regional Queensland, increase fuel storage capacity, and ensure competition in the industrial fuel market.
The terminal is operated by Puma Energy, Australia’s largest independent fuel operator, which has said that it will strengthen competition and supply in Australia’s fuel market, and ensure the region is fully supported despite a downturn in Australia's refinery industry.
The development is Puma Energy's first Australian greenfield import terminal, a major move since their entry to the Australian market in January 2013.
The opening of the newly constructed, $70million terminal was welcomed by Mackay mayor Deirdre Comerford, at a ribbon cutting ceremony this morning.
The terminal has been under construction since March last year, and is comprised of six storage tanks with 56 megalitres of storage capacity, and joined to the port by a 1.6 kilometre overground pipeline.
Puma Energy Australia's general manager Ray Taylor said the terminal would ensure supply security and provide much-needed competition to central and north Queensland.
“A great deal of Australia's mining activity happens out of central Queensland and supply security is critical to ensure the industry's success,” Taylor said.
“As more Australian refineries close we will start to see a greater dependence on fuel imports, and yet there has been a significant lack of investment towards developing the infrastructure needed to manage this change.
“We are responding to a significant gap in the market and our investment in Mackay is to support the mining industry and our acquisition of Central Combined Group, which has an outstanding reputation in the region.”
Taylor said the terminal was a major asset for the region and that Puma Energy's partnership with global trading house Trafigura signalled a change for the competitive commercial fuel market.
“Puma Energy can source its fuel from anywhere in the world based on quality, price and timing,” he said.
“With our in-house capabilities to import, store and distribute premium fuel and diesel it means we can be more competitive against the major retailers and it will mean better value for our customers.”
Puma Energy has recently started redevelopment of its retail network, and has announced plans to refurbish more than 100 service stations around Australia this year.
“In addition to the refurbishment plans, we will also be launching our national fuel card on the 1st June.”
The Mackay Fuel Terminal adds to Puma Energy’s network of more than 62 bulk fuel terminals worldwide.
Puma Energy currently has a global network of over 1,600 retail service stations.