GLADSTONE Port chief executive Craig Walker has talked up the job-creation benefits of widening the Clinton Channel at the Central Queensland port.

The project is expected to improve safety by widening the channel by about 100 metres, with work expected to be finished in the second half of 2020.

But GPC has also reported employing 55 Gladstone locals on the Clinton Vessel Interaction Project.

Another 21 Gladstone businesses were said to have secured work via the project, providing services such as fuel, equipment maintenance and hire and local transport and delivery.

GPC acting CEO Craig Walker said the project was a boost for the area in uncertain times.

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“The CVIP project is forecast to employ an average of 37 locals over the six-month project; April being a busy month meant jobs for 55 locals and work for many local businesses,” Mr Walker said.

“This project is providing jobs and employment security for Gladstone locals and businesses while ensuring our Port remains strong and safe.

“Our focus is on the continued operation of a safe and busy port so we can continue to deliver sustainable economic growth and social prosperity for our region.”

According to GPC, the project is managed under “stringent environmental guidelines”.

Performing the dredging and civil construction part of the project is Queensland business Hall Contracting, and CEO Cameron Hall said he was pleased to contribute.

“Having been deemed an essential service, we have a very important role to play throughout the global pandemic and we’re proud to be supporting local jobs and helping to keep the economy afloat during these challenging times,” Mr Hall said.

“This project will not only benefit the Gladstone region, but also Queensland as a whole.” Shipping between WICET and RG Tanna Coal Terminal is unaffected while works are undertaken.

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