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Pembroke Resources is set to create 1000 jobs in Central Queensland after receiving the last major approval for its Olive Downs coking coal project from the state government.

The $1 billion Olive Downs project is recognised as a potential Tier 1 steelmaking coal project due to its 838 million tonne joint ore reserves committee (JORC) resource and 514 million tonnes of open cut JORC reserves.

It is forecast to produce 15 million tonnes a year of saleable coal across its 79-year mine life.

Pembroke chairman and chief executive Barry Tudor said the company appreciated the Queensland Government’s support by approving the mining lease.

“We are extremely pleased to have been granted the mining leases, having consulted extensively with the local community over the past four years,” he said.

“In addition to our commitment to the environment, we have focused on creating local jobs and proactively engaged with all stakeholders, including establishing a strong relationship with Barada Barna as the traditional owners of the land, with whom we have an Indigenous Land Use Agreement and Cultural Heritage Management Plan in place.”

Pembroke has secured access to power, water rail and port for Olive Downs to assist in kickstarting production, with 500 jobs expected during construction.

Olive Downs will employ over 1000 local workers during its mine life in areas such as Moranbah and Dysart.

Queensland Mines Minister Anthony Lynham said core construction activities would commence next year.

“It’s expected core construction activities at the mine site 40km south-east of Moranbah will begin in 2021 with mining starting as soon as construction is complete,” he said.

“At its peak, Olive Downs should produce up to 15 million tonnes per annum of metallurgical coal, which will be transported by rail to the Dalrymple Bay coal terminal for export to key international markets like Japan, China, India and South Korea.”