Steel plant company out of administration

GLADSTONE'S Boulder Steel support group's prayers were answered when shareholders voted to take the original company out of administration this week.

This takes the project - known as Gladstone Steel Pty Ltd - a step closer to success.

The project has been off and on the table since 2008 when Boulder announced Gladstone was to be the site of a major steel plant.

Late last year it looked dead in the water until a small group of mainly Gladstone people, headed by Paul Sundstrom from Tasman Engineering, launched a rescue bid to save the project.

If it goes ahead, the project will provide 1800 permanent operational jobs, 5500 peripheral jobs, plus a large number of jobs during construction.

The rescue group called for private investors to inject new funds so the original company could be taken out of administration.

The result was the raising of enough money to jump a number of hurdles, which put the plant proposal back on track.

Mr Sundstrom said on Friday that the vote put the project back on track with a 75% chance of total success.

He made special mention of the many hours of hard work carried out by Barb Smith who had dealt with screeds of administrative challenges.

Gladstone Steel has already secured about 70% of the initial five million tons per annum capacity for the project from a Chinese steel processor and a processor in the Philippines, as well as getting the critical environmental impact statement re-started.

It is expected that the plant will be built in the state development area.