Story: Manufacturing – an overview

New industries

New industries

The Motunui synthetic fuel plant, shown here under construction, opened in 1986. It used some of the natural gas produced by the huge Māui gas field, converting it to methanol and then to synthetic petrol. The first of its kind in the world, the Motunui plant was built when oil was very expensive, and the government was seeking to reduce New Zealand’s dependence on imported oil. When oil became cheaper, Motunui made methanol for export.

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How to cite this page:

Ian Hunter, 'Manufacturing – an overview - Manufacturing in the 1970s and 1980s', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 2 March 2024)

Story by Ian Hunter, published 11 Mar 2010