Rutherford has become the first distribution site in the country for international mining truck brand Belaz.
Australasian Pacific Engineering Group has been named the distribution and support partner for Belaz in the Australian market and will open its new premises in Burlington Place today.
One of three mining trucks across the globe are made by Belaz, but only four have ever been imported and used in the Hunter previously.
Business development manager Ray Andison said the partnership was a pivotal move for the mining industry, particularly in the Hunter, bringing a significant boost to the region’s economy through employment and sales to NSW and Queensland.
“It is a huge day for us and a big thing for Australia,” he said.
“Rutherford is a good central location because it is a mining place.
“We are a small company, but once we start to get vehicles out on the ground we are going to explode and be offering a lot of jobs, which will be good for the economy.”
Former prime minister John Howard will officiate at the opening of the premises today.
Distinguished guests include OJSC Belaz general manager Piotr Parkhomchik, Warren Reynolds representing the Belarus Honorary Consul in Australia, and ambassador of the Republic of Belarus in Indonesia Vladimir Lopato-Zagorsky.
Nationals candidate for Hunter Michael Johnsen will attend, representing federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott.