Government officials remain quiet on Port Alma's worth
GOVERNMENT and Gladstone port officials were keeping tight-lipped yesterday about how much Port Alma might be worth if its sold off.
Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls will soon begin his first round of visits to regional Queensland to speak about the government's asset sale plans.
The Gladstone Ports Corporation, which controls Port Alma, is one of the state assets that it has been suggested could be offloaded to help reduce the state's debt and fund future infrastructure projects.
Neither the Premier's office or the ports corporation would yesterday divulge its worth.
But, the most recent annual report for the corporation suggests its total assets (see fact box) were worth $1.8 billion in 2012/13.
That includes $709.1 million in plant and $234.7 million in commercial wharves.
The organisation also achieved after tax profit of $58 million.
The premier's office said a valuation on the asset had not yet been determined, as the sale was not certain.
The GPC said it did not make public comment on issues such as government decisions, including a potential sale or lease.
During a visit to Rockhampton last month Premier Campbell Newman posed the question of what it could mean to Rockhampton and Gladstone if the port was sold.
LNP Member for Keppel Bruce Young said the Treasurer had flagged the port as a sales option, but nothing had been decided.
"At this point in time we're only suggesting that those assets are on the table," he said.
Mr Young said they had to get Queensland's economy back on track after inheriting a huge debt.
"We're treading water at the moment, but at the same time we won't do anything before getting a mandate ... we want to know how Queenslanders feel about asset sales.
"Unlike Labor, who sold assets without any consultation of Queenslanders, we will be having those discussions in the next couple of months."
A spokesman for the Premier said the state has $80 billion worth of debt.
"Any potential sale of the Port of Gladstone would reduce the interest repayments on Labor's debt - which are $4 billion a year, or $450,000 an hour - and free up money to invest in infrastructure and services."
Port of Gladstone
Port of Bundaberg