• DBCT
  • About DBCT
  • Relevant Regulations

Regulation of DBCT

Of the 20 ports located in Queensland, we determine the fair and reasonable terms and conditions of only one – DBCT (Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal). Our involvement can be summarised as:

  • assessing and approving access undertakings
  • assessing and approving amendments
  • arbitrating access disputes
  • enforcing breaches of access obligations
  • investigating and monitoring prices for ports declared for monopoly prices oversight
  • assessing competitive neutrality.



The DBCT has been 'declared' a monopoly business activity with market power.

This implies that competition would be enhanced if access is allowed to third parties.

Under the Third Party Access Regime (Part 5) in the QCA Act we may assess and approve access undertakings provided by the DBCT, which remain in force for a set number of years.

Reasonable amendments may be made to the undertaking and submitted to us through, what's called, a draft amending process. 

Current Access Undertaking

The current access undertaking, which sets out the terms and conditions under which DBCT Management will provide access to the terminal, came into effect on 16 February 2017.

DBCT is one of two coal export terminals at the Port of Hay Point, located 30km from the Queensland coastal town of Mackay.

The Port of Hay Point is one of the world's largest coal export ports, handling coal from over 30 mines in the Bowen Basin, central Queensland – the source of more than 80% of Queensland’s coal production.

Expanding DBCT

Ongoing expansions to keep up with global demand for resource and energy commodities have brought the capacity of DBCT to 85 mTpa in 2010. This makes the DBCT one of the largest coal loading terminals in the world.

An interim study has been conducted  to investigate further expansion to raise capacity to 153 mTpa, but the rest of the study has been discontinued.

The DBCT is owned by the Queensland Government and leased to DBCT Management through a 50 year lease to operate, maintain and develop the terminal (with an option for a further 49 years).

The ports authority for Hay Point Port is the North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation Ltd, which also manages the ports at Abbot Point, Weipa, Mackay and Maryborough.

Port activities (relating to our monitoring role) fall under the following legislation:


The Transport Infrastructure Act covers, amongst other things:

  • functions and powers of port authorities
  • land management.


The Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Act regulates, amongst other things:

  • safety, including ship safety
  • navigation
  • portage
  • the role of harbour masters.

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