Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has turned the sod on Brisbane's $158 million new International Cruise Terminal, heralding the start of a new era for Queensland's economy.
The $158 million project is scheduled to open in October next year, with the potential to more than double Brisbane's cruise industry.
The economic boost in welcoming more tourists and supplying bigger ships is estimated at more than a billion dollars over the next few years, on top of Queensland’s already billion dollar industry.
"Building this one piece of infrastructure flows through our entire economy," the Premier said.
"Ships that were too long, too high and too deep to dock at Brisbane's Hamilton facility will have a dedicated cruise terminal.
“That will stimulate the industry at ports up and down the Queensland coast, as we aim to increase passenger numbers throughout the state to more than a million a year."
Minister for State Development and Manufacturing Cameron Dick said the project was already delivering jobs.
"The Brisbane International Cruise Terminal is supporting, on average, an estimated 245 jobs each year during construction, while an additional 49 jobs will be created each year over the next 20 years," Mr Dick said.
"As Manufacturing Minister, I am also pleased that ABFI Steel Group, a local company based in Wacol, has manufactured 105 piles for the wharf where work began in February."
Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said the Brisbane International Cruise Terminal would provide a welcome boost to the state's tourism sector.
"Queensland's cruise industry is booming under the Palaszczuk Government. Last financial year we saw 520 ships port in Queensland — 11 per cent growth year-on-year, making the Sunshine State Australia's undisputed cruise capital," Ms Jones said.
"Already the cruise sector supports more than 3,700 jobs state wide and we're committed to growing this industry."
Port of Brisbane CEO Roy Cummins said the new International Cruise Terminal will be a world-class facility.
"Within its first five years the terminal is expected to handle over 1,100 vessel calls and around 1.8 million passengers," Mr Cummins said.
"With over 180 bookings confirmed for the 2020/21 cruising season thousands of passengers across the globe are already gearing up to head to Queensland."
The proximity of Brisbane Airport gives the Brisbane International Cruise Terminal the edge in providing easy access.
Leading Australian construction company Hindmarsh will deliver the terminal building and Brisbane-based specialist marine contractor Brady Marine and Civil is constructing the wharf.