• Throughput tonnage (financial year to date)
    Annual throughput (16-17)
    Top 3 cargo by tonnage (16-17)
    • 1 Fuel 1,401,112
    • 2 Sugar 913,941
    • 3 Grain 228,638
  • Conditions
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As Queensland’s fourth largest multi-commodity port by throughput, Mackay is one of the major servicing centres for the Central Queensland mining and agricultural industries.

The port operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and extends over 800 hectares of land and water under the direct control of North Queensland Bulk Ports.

The Mackay region is the largest sugar producing area in Australia, and the port hosts one of the world’s largest bulk sugar terminals. The region also supports the nearby Bowen Basin and Galilee Basin coalfields, which produce most of Queensland’s coal.

The Port of Mackay not only services coastal and international shipping but has also become popular with recreation small craft vessels. The neighbouring Mackay Marina (owned privately) features a residential and tourist precinct, major marina amenities, 479 marina berths and lift out shipyard.


Located five kilometres north of the city of Mackay – about halfway between Brisbane and Cairns – the port comprises four wharves within the sheltered waters of Mackay Harbour. Its proximity to the Mackay CBD, and Australia’s leading mining equipment technology and services (METS) hub in Paget, makes this tailored port an ideal integrated logistics transport solution for your trade needs. What’s more, it boasts land transport links by road and rail, and water links by ship or barge.

Mackay’s multi-cargo import and export port offers easy access to the Whitsunday, Central Highlands and coal fields regions, as well as a primary link to the rest of the world through its break-bulk port.

Trading through Mackay

There are many strategic advantages to using the Port of Mackay, including limited (if any) ship queuing (demurrage), common user infrastructure, a quarantine wash-down facility and licensed customs depot, ready access to major transportation corridors and an extensive land bank for laydown areas or development.

With proximity to current and future regional resource projects and agricultural developments, the port is an ideal supply-chain partner for both inbound and outbound commodities and goods.

The primary commodities traded through the Port of Mackay include fuel, sugar (raw and refined), grain, magnetite, fertiliser, scrap metal and tallow.

See port throughput figures or find out more about trading through Mackay.

Strategic planning

Long term development of the Port of Mackay will ensure it becomes an integral and inseparable element of the economy and culture of the Mackay region.

While the port’s existing infrastructure and configuration can accommodate 550 to 600 ships per year, it currently handles only about 160 ships each year. The port has a combined import and export cargo capacity of more than six million tonnes per year, yet current trade sits at around half this level.

NQBP is committed to investing in and upgrading port facilities, and working with our customers to progress trade opportunities to ensure regional prosperity.

With around $1.3 billion in state and Commonwealth funding from now to 2022 committed to road infrastructure upgrades in the Mackay region, the efficiency of the transport corridors between the port, Mackay region, Central Highlands and Whitsundays will enjoy significant improvements.

We are actively pursuing growth opportunities at our ports, including planning, obtaining approvals for, and undertaking initial development works on the next Mackay industrial precinct expansion area.

Land areas behind the port already accommodate more than 50 industrial and commercial businesses with more than 155 hectares of land under lease.

About 250 hectares of vacant land is available for development (subject to, for example, further site investigations into the drainage and environmental values). This property represents a large land bank we can use to meet regional industry demands well into the future.

Read an overview of our planning or consult the Port of Mackay land use plan.

    • Minimal ship traffic
    • Four wharves, including heavy lift wharf
    • Extensive common user infrastructure including roll-on/roll-off (RORO) barge facility
    • Key gateway for regional Queensland with ready access to transport corridors (sea, rail and land)
    • General and break-bulk cargoes at 3 berths
    • Large land bank for laydown areas or development
    • Accommodation for oversize and over mass vehicles and loads
    • Proximity to existing and future development projects
  • As a port authority, NQBP is responsible for strategic planning; business and infrastructure development; environmental management; security and safety; efficiency; maintaining navigable port depths for shipping; and issuing licences, leases and permits to other organisations for use of port land, infrastructure and facilities. NQBP also oversees port pilotage operations and navigation for the Port of Mackay.

    Read more about us.

  • As the port authority for the Port of Mackay, NQBP is committed to working in the best interests of the region’s wider community and supporting a range of business enterprises through the Corporate Communities Program.

    Additionally, the Port of Mackay Community Reference Group provides a community engagement forum for discussing issues relevant to operations, development and planning activities within the Port of Mackay.

  • While sustainable development of the port is essential to the region’s prosperity, so is care and consideration of our environmental and cultural heritage. Twenty-six species of special conservation significance have been recorded on port lands, and many waterways are affected by port activities.

    NQBP has programs in place to ensure we meet our environmental management obligations and our responsibility for the long-term safeguarding of natural resources.

Do business with the Port of Mackay
Join other organisations that have entered into integrated, cost-efficient contracts with us, and capitalise on the trade opportunities of our cutting-edge ports.