Skip links and keyboard navigation


Queensland has an extensive network of 20 ports along its coastline, ranging from small community ports to world-class coal export terminals and a capital city multi-cargo port. 

These ports are a major component of Queensland’s supply chain and economy, facilitating trade and the development of the regional, state and national economies. Queensland has both population centres and industries requiring imports, as well as natural resources which supply global markets—particularly in Asia.

The efficient operation of Queensland’s port network is essential to delivering continued economic growth, job creation and sustainable development for our community. 

Industry proponents and government agencies are continuing to work closely to ensure that ports are well positioned to capitalise on expansion opportunities.

Queensland’s ports network recorded a total throughput of 253.4 million tonnes in 2010-11. This throughput represents a 6.9% increase compared to the result 5 years ago.

The ports are currently managed by 4 government-owned corporations, and 1 private company for the Port of Brisbane.

Transport and Main Roads is a shareholding department providing oversight of the Queensland’s 4 government-owned port corporations.

Sustainable port development and operation

The majority of Queensland's trading ports operate adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA).

The Queensland Government is working to support sustainable port development with a focus on economic growth and protecting the Great Barrier Reef.

The Queensland Government has implemented a number of port related actions of the Reef 2050 Long-Term Sustainability Plan (Reef 2050 Plan), the most comprehensive plan ever developed to secure the health and resilience of the Great Barrier Reef. More information about the Reef 2050 Plan is available on the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection website.

The introduction of the Sustainable Ports Development Act 2015, which commenced on 20 November 2015 addressed a number of actions within the Reef 2050 Plan.

The Department of State Development’s website provides further information about the Sustainable Ports Development Act 2015.

Another action from the Reef 2050 Plan is the development of a Maintenance Dredging Strategy. The Queensland Government released the strategy in November 2016.

The Schedule for State-wide Maintenance Dredging of Queensland Ports describes the schedule for maintenance dredging of Queensland ports in 2017 and details how this schedule has been developed. The schedule was prepared by the Queensland Port Association in March 2017, before maintenance dredging activities commenced. The schedule is based on information provided by individual ports and the dredge operator.

Maritime Safety Queensland 

Maritime Safety Queensland is a government agency attached to the Department of Transport and Main Roads. It protects Queensland's waterways and the people who use them—providing safer, cleaner seas. Maritime Safety Queensland also controls some maritime services including pilotage services and vessel traffic services.

Last updated
29 January 2018