THE sheer scale of construction simply beggars belief. It has cost more than US$18 billion to build from scratch.

More than 1500 workers call the place home at any one time and is the final destination for a 420km underground pipeline weaving its way from Roma to Gladstone.

The Santos GLNG project on Curtis Island off Gladstone is now entering its final stages in readiness for the first gas to be pumped next year.

Premier Campbell Newman took the opportunity on Tuesday to see the world-class project first-hand.

"In the not-to-distant future we will see supplies of affordable and environmentally friendly energy going to the world," he said.

"There are other projects on the island that will be delivered over the next 18 months that will see large quantities of gas going to Asian markets.

"This will make Queensland a powerhouse state, not just among the other states, but the leading gas exporter in the world."

Santos CEO David Knox said the project had reached the 75% milestone and was preparing to commission the first gas mid-year before heading into full export mode.

"As an Australian owned and operated company we are proud to be building this industry for Queensland," he said.

"Santos GLNG has provided $5.1 billion worth of work to Queensland businesses and over the coming decades will contribute billions of dollars in royalty payments to the people of Queensland.

"We have had a home in this state for more than 50 years and it represents a hugely important part of out future."

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