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Flinders Shire Council has signed an agreement to advance development of the proposed $100 million-plus Hughenden beef processing facility with Chinese partner CNVM Investment.

Construction is set to commence in late 2020, with operations to commence 2022, the council said.

It is planned to process between 800 and 1500 head daily, creating more than 200 local jobs.

The strategic partnership between CNVM Investment and Flinders Shire Council has advanced the project to the detailed project design and approvals stage. 

Importantly, the project development deed that was signed requires CNVM Investment to develop the project within agreed timeframes and guidelines, the council said.

The signing came within a week of the Queensland Coordinator-General approving the $47 million, 15 Mile Irrigated Agricultural Development project at Hughenden.

It is an exciting time for the shire, according to Mayor Jane McNamara, who said the projects combined should create about 350 local jobs.

“The next very exciting challenge is to make sure that we have enough housing and service delivery in the town,” she said.

She said the projects should see Hughenden return to the strength it held before the decline of local shearing and rail jobs.

In a written statement on the weekend deal, Cr McNamara praised it as an exemplary case of what small councils could achieve when they worked as a team to create positive outcomes for their community.

The weekend signing ceremony was attended by Queensland Chinese Consulate Officials in support of CNVM Investment representative Miao Wang.

Ms Wang described the project as exciting not only for CNVM and its partners along the supply chain to China, but also for further developing good working relationships between Australia and China.

“We at CNVM are very committed to the Hughenden Processing Facility and feedlot and are looking to complete the approvals and development process as quickly and effectively as possible, and to bringing this project to life for Australia and China,” she said.

Flinders Shire seals deal for meat processing plant