Burnie Gateway


Port of Burnie, Tasmania

Current Phase

Planning and Design

The Burnie Gateway initiative will lay the foundation for exponential growth in Tasmanian mineral exports to global markets, enabling capacity for larger vessels to berth and ensuring fit-for-purpose terminal infrastructure. Importantly, this project will also enable growth in other commodities such as forestry and container export.


The Port of Burnie is a major Tasmanian deep-water port located on the north-west coast. The Port supports a variety of industries, including mining, forestry, container freight fuel and tourism.

Key industry activities at the Port include:

Forestry: The Port is a critical gateway for the movement of forestry products from northern Tasmania and is home to the Burnie Chip Export Terminal (BCET).

Bulk mineral export: The Port currently supports strong bulk minerals export volumes to both domestic and international markets. The minerals industry in Tasmania is experiencing significant growth, as new Tasmanian companies seek to complete planning, logistics, supply chain and market reviews.

Container import/export: The Port supports significant container volumes for the benefit of Tasmania. As an Island state, container trade is vital to Tasmania's economy, for both imports and exports Container volumes through the Port for FY21 accounted for 45% of the State's overall container movements.

In addition, tourism is emerging as a growth sector for the Port, with cruise visitations returning in 2022.

Project opportunity

TasPorts launched its Port Master Plan in 2018 to guide significant capital investment in Tasmanian port infrastructure over a 15-year period. The Port of Burnie was identified as a key component of this Plan, with significant opportunity identified to enable growth in bulk mineral exports, along with scope to develop an international container terminal.

In February 2021, the Burnie Gateway initiative was included in Infrastructure Australia's Priority List recognising its national significance.

The Tasmanian minerals sector has a significant growth volume projection. A fundamental key to unlocking this growth is the capability to accommodate larger bulk export vessels at the Port to enable shipping direct to global markets, including South East Asia, Japan and China. Current mineral storage and ship loader constraints are also significant inhibitors to growth.

Bulk export industry representatives are aligned on the Port of Burnie as Tasmania's preferred bulk export port. The only deep-water port on Tasmania's north-west coast, the Port is also logistically suited to bulk export due to its close proximity to rich mineral deposits, such as iron ore.

Through a combination of dredging and the development of landside infrastructure, the Port offers exponential growth for the Tasmanian minerals sector and will also provide growth opportunities for dry bulk cargo, forestry products and international containers.

Investment in port expansion is necessary to ensure Tasmania can keep pace with supply-side pressures in the future.

Project Scope

  • Capital dredging to accommodate larger vessels with increased tonnage capacity.
  • Port infrastructure development to increase volume of on port cargo operations.
  • Development of ship loading infrastructure, including mobile crane reclaimer, conveyors, stockpiles on port, undercover storage capability and road optimisation.
  • Reclamation of land to build a multi-commodity terminal with ship loading capability for minerals (bulk and concentrate), forestry and international containers.

Project benefits

The Burnie Gateway will bring significant trade and economic benefits to Tasmania through the provision of essential port infrastructure that enables exponential growth in exports to global markets over a 30-year horizon.

Key project benefits include:

  • construction of dedicated bulk export terminal at a deep-water port within 30km of major iron ore deposits;
  • construction of bulk export infrastructure enabling multi-commodity, multi-user export through the Port;
  • future-proofing the Port with the capability to berth larger vessels with increased tonnage capacity;
  • improved port transport facilities;
  • increased capacity for berthing of larger vessels including cruise ships; and
  • landside facility expansion suitable for a range of new export ventures.

Strategic Alignment

The delivery of this project is of critical importance to the state of Tasmania and the Port of Burnie, ensuring a suitable working port, terminal and berthing space for the next 30 years.

The development is aligned with the following government strategies:

Tasmanian Trade Strategy 2019-2025
A coordinated whole-of-government approach to grow trade (domestically and internationally) with a focus on building trade in key sectors, showcasing Tasmania in priority markets, supporting trade logistics and market access, and building the export capabilities of Tasmanian businesses.

Our Infrastructure Future:
30-Year Infrastructure Strategy

Informing the Tasmanian Government’s infrastructure investment decisions and ensuring appropriate long-term planning for Tasmania’s future.

In addition, the Burnie Gateway initiative was included in Infrastructure Australia's Priority List, recognising its national significance.

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